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Agency Forms Submitted for OMB Review, Request for Comments

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SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) is forwarding 4 Information Collection Requests (ICR) to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Our ICR describes the information we seek to collect from the public. Review and approval by OIRA ensures that we impose appropriate paperwork burdens.

The RRB invites comments on the proposed collections of information to determine (1) the practical utility of the collections; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden of the collections; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information that is the subject of collection; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of collections on respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments to the RRB or OIRA must contain the OMB control number of the ICR. For proper consideration of your comments, it is best if the RRB and OIRA receive them within 30 days of the publication date.

1. Title and purpose of information collection: Placement Service; OMB 3220-0057. Section 12(i) of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA), authorizes the RRB to establish, maintain, and operate free employment offices to provide claimants for unemployment benefits with job placement opportunities. Section 704(d) of the Regional Railroad Reorganization Act of 1973, as amended, and as extended by the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985, required the RRB to maintain and distribute a list of railroad job vacancies, by class and craft, based on information furnished by rail carriers to the RRB. Although the requirement under the law expired effective August 13, 1987, the RRB has continued to obtain this information in keeping with its employment service responsibilities under Section 12(k) of the RUIA. Application procedures for the job placement program are prescribed in 20 CFR 325. The procedures pertaining to the RRB's obtaining and distributing job vacancy reports furnished by rail carriers are described in 20 CFR 346.1.

The RRB currently utilizes four forms to obtain information needed to carry out its job placement responsibilities. Form ES-2, Central Register Notification, is used by the RRB to obtain information needed to update a computerized central register of separated and furloughed railroad employees available for employment in the railroad industry. Forms ES-21, Referral to State Employment Service, and ES-21c, Report of State Employment Service Office, are used by the RRB to provide placement assistance for unemployed railroad employees through arrangements with State Employment Service offices. Form UI-35, Field Office Record of Claimant Interview, is used primarily by the RRB to conduct in-person interviews of claimants for unemployment benefits.

Completion of these forms is required to obtain or maintain a benefit. In addition, the RRB also collects Railroad Job Vacancies information received voluntarily from railroad employers.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (81 FR 89521 on December 12, 2016) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Placement Service.

OMB Control Number: 3220-0057.

Form(s) submitted: ES-2, ES-21, ES-21c, UI-35 and Job Vacancies Report.

Type of request: Extension without change of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Private Sector, Businesses or other for-profits; Individuals or Households; State, Local, and Tribal Governments.

Abstract: Under the RUIA, the Railroad Retirement Board provides job placement assistance for unemployed railroad workers. The collection obtains information from job applicants, railroad employers, and State Employment Service offices for use in placement, for providing referrals for job openings, reports of referral results and for verifying and monitoring claimant eligibility.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes no revisions to the forms in the collection.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Form No.Annual responsesTime (minutes)Burden (hours)
ES-23,750.2516
ES-2180.680.9
ES-21c251.500.6
UI-35 in person6,3007.00735
UI-35 by mail70010.50123
Job Vacancies47010.0078
Total11,325953

2. Title and Purpose of information collection: Certification Regarding Rights to Unemployment Benefits; OMB 3220-0079

Under Section 4 of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA), an employee who leaves work voluntarily is disqualified for unemployment benefits unless the employee left work for good cause and is not qualified for unemployment benefits under any other law. RRB Form Start Printed Page 11664UI-45, Claimant's Statement—Voluntary Leaving of Work, is used by the RRB to obtain the claimant's statement when the claimant, the claimant's employer, or another source indicates that the claimant has voluntarily left work.

Completion of Form UI-45 is required to obtain or retain benefits. One response is received from each respondent.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (81 FR 89522 on December 12, 2016) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Certification Regarding Rights to Unemployment Benefits.

OMB Control Number: 3220-0079.

Form(s) submitted: UI-45.

Type of request: Extension without change of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Individuals or Households.

Abstract: In administering the disqualification for the voluntary leaving of work provision of Section 4 of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, the Railroad Retirement Board investigates an unemployment claim that indicates the claimant left voluntarily. The certification obtains information needed to determine if the leaving was for good cause.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes no changes to Form UI-45.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Form No.Annual responsesTime (minutes)Burden (hours)
UI-452001550

3. Title and Purpose of information collection: Self-Employment and Substantial Service Questionnaire; OMB 3220-0138.

Section 2 of the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA) provides for payment of annuities to qualified employees and their spouses. In order to receive an age and service annuity, Section 2(e)(3) states that an applicant must stop all railroad work and give up any rights to return to such work. However, applicants are not required to stop nonrailroad work or self-employment.

The RRB considers some work claimed as “self-employment” to actually be employment for an employer. Whether the RRB classifies a particular activity as self-employment or as work for an employer depends upon the circumstances of each case. These circumstances are prescribed in 20 CFR 216.

Under the 1988 amendments to the RRA, an applicant is no longer required to stop work for a “Last Pre-Retirement Nonrailroad Employer” (LPE). However, Section 2(f)(6) of the RRA requires that a portion of the employee's Tier II benefit and supplemental annuity be deducted for earnings from the “LPE.”

The “LPE” is defined as the last person, company, or institution with whom the employee or spouse applicant was employed concurrently with, or after, the applicant's last railroad employment and before their annuity beginning date. If a spouse never worked for a railroad, the LPE is the last person for whom he or she worked.

The RRB utilizes Form AA-4, Self-Employment and Substantial Service Questionnaire, to obtain information needed to determine if the work the applicant claims is self-employment is really self-employment or work for an LPE or railroad service. If the work is self-employment, the questionnaire identifies any month in which the applicant did not perform substantial service. Completion is voluntary. However, failure to complete the form could result in the nonpayment of benefits. One response is requested of each respondent.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (81 FR 89522 on December 12, 2016) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Self-Employment and Substantial Service Questionnaire.

OMB Control Number: 3220-0138.

Form(s) submitted: AA-4.

Type of request: Extension without change of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Individuals or Households.

Abstract: Section 2 of the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA) provides for payment of annuities to qualified employees and their spouses. Work for a Last Pre-Retirement Nonrailroad Employer (LPE), and work in self-employment affect payment in different ways. This collection obtains information to determine whether claimed self-employment is really self-employment, and not work for a railroad or LPE.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes no changes to Form AA-4.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Form No.Annual responsesTime (minutes)Burden (hours)
AA-4 (With assistance)57040380
AA-4 (Without assistance)307035
Total600415

4. Title and purpose of information collection: Withholding Certificate for Railroad Retirement Monthly Annuity Payments; OMB 3220-0149.

The Internal Revenue Code requires that all payers of tax liable private pensions to U.S. citizens or residents: (1) Notify each recipient at least concurrent with initial withholding that the payer is, in fact, withholding benefits for tax liability and that the recipient has the option of electing not to have the payer withhold, or to withhold at a specific rate; (2) withhold benefits for tax purposes (in the absence of the recipient's election not to withhold benefits); and (3) notify all beneficiaries, at least annually, that they have the option to change their withholding status or elect not to have benefits withheld.

The RRB provides Form RRB-W4P, Withholding Certificate for Railroad Start Printed Page 11665Retirement Payments, to its annuitants to exercise their withholding options.

Completion of the form is required to obtain or retain a benefit. One response is requested of each respondent.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (81 FR 89998 on December 13, 2016) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Withholding Certificate for Railroad Retirement Monthly Annuity Payments.

OMB Control Number: 3220-0149.

Form(s) submitted: RRB W-4P.

Type of request: Extension without change of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Individuals or Households.

Abstract: Under Public Law 98-76, railroad retirement beneficiaries' Tier II, dual vested and supplemental benefits are subject to income tax under private pension rules. Under Public Law 99-514, the non-social security equivalent benefit portion of Tier I is also taxable under private pension rules. The collection obtains the information needed by the Railroad Retirement Board to implement the income tax withholding provisions.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes no changes to Form RRB W-4P.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Estimated annual number of respondents: 25,000.

Total annual responses: 25,000.

Total annual reporting hours: 1.

5. Title and Purpose of information collection: Earnings Information Request; OMB 3220-0184 Under Section 2 of the Railroad Retirement Act, an annuity is not payable, or is reduced for any month(s) in which the beneficiary works for a railroad or earns more than prescribed amounts. The provisions relating to the reduction or non-payment of annuities by reason of work are prescribed in 20 CFR 230.

The RRB utilizes Form G-19-F, Earnings Information Request, to obtain earnings information that either had not been previously reported or erroneously reported by a beneficiary.

Currently the claimant is asked to enter the date they stopped working, if applicable. If a respondent fails to complete the form, the RRB may be unable to pay them benefits. One response is requested of each respondent.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (81 FR 89998 on December 13, 2016) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Earnings Information Request.

OMB Control Number: 3220-0184.

Form(s) submitted: G-19-F.

Type of request: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Individuals or Households.

Abstract: Under Section 2 of the Railroad Retirement Act, an annuity is not payable, or is reduced for any month(s) in which the beneficiary works for a railroad or earns more than prescribed amounts. The collection obtains earnings information not previously or erroneously reported by a beneficiary.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes the implementation of an Internet-based equivalent Form G-19F. It will be available for downloading from the RRB's Web site at www.rrb.gov. It will collect the same information as the approved version but will be fillable and printable online. No other changes are proposed.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Form No.Annual responsesTime (minutes)Burden (hours)
G-19-F9008120

6. Title and Purpose of information collection: Designation of Contact Officials; 3220-0200. Coordination between railroad employers and the RRB is essential to properly administer the payment of benefits under the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA) and the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA). In order to enhance timely coordination activity, the RRB utilizes Form G-117A, Designation of Contact Officials. Form G-117A is used by railroad employers to designate employees who are to act as point of contact with the RRB on a variety of RRA and RUIA-related matters.

Completion is voluntary. One response is requested from each respondent.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (81 FR 89522 on December 12, 2016) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Designation of Contact Officials.

OMB Control Number: 3220-0200.

Form(s) submitted: G-117A.

Type of request: Extension without change of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Private Sector; Businesses or other for profits.

Abstract: The Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) requests that railroad employers designate employees to act as liaison with the RRB on a variety of Railroad Retirement Act and Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act matters.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes no revisions to Form G-117A.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Form No.Annual responsesTime (minutes)Burden (hours)
G-117A1001525

Additional Information or Comments: Copies of the forms and supporting documents can be obtained from Dana Hickman at (312) 751-4981 or Dana.Hickman@RRB.GOV.

Comments regarding the information collection should be addressed to Brian Foster, Railroad Retirement Board, 844 North Rush Street, Chicago, Illinois 60611-1275 or emailed to Brian.Foster@rrb.gov. and to the OMB Desk Officer for the RRB, Fax: 202-395-6974, Email Start Printed Page 11666address: OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov.

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Brian D. Foster,

Clearance Officer.

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[FR Doc. 2017-03578 Filed 2-23-17; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7905-01-P