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Notice

Notice of Request for a New Information Collection: Certificates of Medical Examination

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AGENCY:

Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Notice and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regulations, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing its intention to collect certificates of medical examination to determine whether or not an applicant for an FSIS Food Inspector, Consumer Safety Inspector, or Veterinary Medical Officer in-plant position meets the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) approved medical qualification standards.

DATES:

Submit comments on or before July 17, 2015.

ADDRESSES:

FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on this information collection. Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: This Web site provides the ability to type short comments directly into the Start Printed Page 28221comment field on this Web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions at that site for submitting comments.
  • Mail, including CD-ROMs, etc.: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Docket Clerk, Patriots Plaza 3, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Mailstop 3782, Room 8-163A, Washington, DC 20250-3700.
  • Hand- or courier-delivered submittals: Deliver to Patriots Plaza 3, 355 E Street SW., Room 8-163A, Washington, DC 20250-3700

Instructions: All items submitted by mail or electronic mail must include the Agency name and docket number FSIS-2015-0017. Comments received in response to this docket will be made available for public inspection and posted without change, including any personal information, to http://www.regulations.gov.

Docket: For access to background documents or comments received, go to the FSIS Docket Room at Patriots Plaza 3, 355 E Street SW., Room 8-164, Washington, DC 20250-3700 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Gina Kouba, Paperwork Reduction Act Coordinator, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 6067, South Building, Washington, DC 20250; (202)690-6510.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: Certificates of Medical Examination.

Type of Request: New information collection.

Abstract: FSIS has been delegated the authority to exercise the functions of the Secretary of Agriculture (7 CFR 2.18, 2.53) as specified in the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601, et seq.), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451, et seq.), and the Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 U.S.C. 1031, et seq.). FSIS protects the public by verifying that the nation's commercial supply of meat, poultry, and processed egg products is safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.

Annually, the occupants of in plant positions in FSIS inspect more than 8 billion birds and more than 130 million head of livestock. Veterinary Medical Officers, Food Inspectors, and Consumer Safety Inspectors check animals before and after slaughter, preventing diseased animals from entering the food supply, and examining carcasses for visible defects that can affect safety and quality. Consumer Safety Inspectors work in processed product inspection, assuring products are processed under sanitary conditions, are not adulterated, and are truthfully labeled. Inspection activities of Veterinary Medical Officers, Food Inspectors, and Consumer Safety Inspectors are carried out in over 6,000 privately owned establishments nationwide.

The duties performed by in-plant inspection personnel can be arduous, requiring standing and walking 8-9 hours daily, often on slippery and hazardous surfaces. Work is typically performed in high humidity and, depending on weather conditions, warm or cold temperatures. The work involves frequent contact with animal tissues, animal body fluids, chemical sanitation rinses and water.

FSIS plans to request a new information collection to collect certificates of medical examination to determine whether or not an applicant for a Food Inspector, Consumer Safety Inspector, or Veterinary Medical Officer in-plant position meets the Office of Personnel Management (OPM)-approved medical qualification standards for the position. These new forms ensure accurate collection of the required data. The OPM-approved medical qualification standards apply only to positions in FSIS, not positions in other Federal agencies.

When requesting that applicants for the positions listed above undergo the medical examination, a representative of FSIS will notify the applicants in writing of the reasons for the examination, the process, and the consequences of the failure to report for an examination or provide medical documentation. Any physical condition which would hinder an individual's full, efficient, and safe performance of his or her duties will be considered disqualifying for employment, except when convincing evidence is presented that the individuals can perform the essential functions of the job efficiently and without hazard to themselves or others.

In accordance with the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008, FSIS will make reasonable accommodations for the known physical or mental limitations of qualified individuals with disabilities unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the operation of FSIS.

FSIS has made the following estimates on the basis of an information collection assessment.

Estimate of Burden: FSIS estimates that it will take each respondent 90 minutes to complete the form.

Respondents: FSIS Applicants for Food Inspector, Consumer Safety Inspector, and Veterinary Medical Officer in plant positions.

Estimated No. of Respondents: 500 respondents.

Estimated No. of Annual Responses per Respondent: 1.

Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 750 hours.

Copies of this information collection assessment can be obtained from Gina Kouba, Paperwork Reduction Act Coordinator, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, 1400 Independence SW., Room 6077, South Building, Washington, DC 20250, (202)690-6510.

Comments are invited on: (a) whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of FSIS's functions, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of FSIS's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques, or other forms of information technology. Comments may be sent to both FSIS, at the addresses provided above, and the Desk Officer for Agriculture, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC 20253.

Responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

Additional Public Notification

Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy development is important. Consequently, FSIS will announce this Federal Register publication on-line through the FSIS Web page located at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/​federal-register.

FSIS also will make copies of this publication available through the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide information regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal Register notices, FSIS public meetings, and other types of information that could affect or would be of interest to our constituents and stakeholders. The Update is available on the FSIS Web page. Through the Web page, FSIS Start Printed Page 28222is able to provide information to a much broader, more diverse audience. In addition, FSIS offers an email subscription service which provides automatic and customized access to selected food safety news and information. This service is available at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/​subscribe. Options range from recalls to export information, regulations, directives, and notices. Customers can add or delete subscriptions themselves, and have the option to password protect their accounts.

USDA Non-Discrimination Statement

No agency, officer, or employee of the USDA shall, on the grounds of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, or political beliefs, exclude from participation in, deny the benefits of, or subject to discrimination any person in the United States under any program or activity conducted by the USDA.

How to File a Complaint of Discrimination

To file a complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, which may be accessed online at http://www.ocio.usda.gov/​sites/​default/​files/​docs/​2012/​Complain_​combined_​6_​8_​12.pdf, or write a letter signed by you or your authorized representative.

Send your completed complaint form or letter to USDA by mail, fax, or email:

Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-9410, Fax: (202) 690-7442, Email: program.intake@usda.gov.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.), should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

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Done at Washington, DC on: May 13, 2015.

Alfred V. Almanza,

Acting Administrator.

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[FR Doc. 2015-11997 Filed 5-15-15; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P