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Notice

Notice of Intent To Request Revision and Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection

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AGENCY:

National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Notice and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intention of the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) to request revision and extension of a currently approved information collection, the List Sampling Frame Surveys. Revision to burden hours will be needed due to changes in the size of the target population, sampling design, and questionnaire length. Annually, NASS obtains lists of farm and ranch operators from different crop and livestock organizations. Before adding these names to our list of active operators we will contact the individuals to determine if they qualify as a farm or ranch and then collect basic information from them on the size and type of operation they have. These data will be used to eliminate any duplication we may have with names already on our list.

In addition to the names of potential operators we receive from different crop and livestock organizations, NASS has been investigating the use of web-scraping as a source of identifying new farm operators to add to our List Frame. This new approach will be conducted under a two stage process. A short screening form will be used first to identify potential agricultural producers who will then receive a more detailed questionnaire. This approach is designed to minimize respondent burden on small or non-farming entities.

DATES:

Comments on this notice must be received by December 3, 2018 to be assured of consideration.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments, identified by docket number 0535-0140, by any of the following methods:

  • Email: ombofficer@nass.usda.gov. Include docket number above in the subject line of the message.
  • eFax: (855) 838-6382.
  • Mail: Mail any paper, disk, or CD-ROM submissions to: David Hancock, NASS Clearance Officer, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 5336 South Building, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250-2024.Start Printed Page 50068
  • Hand Delivery/Courier: Hand deliver to: David Hancock, NASS Clearance Officer, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 5336 South Building, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250-2024.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Kevin L. Barnes, Associate Administrator, National Agricultural Statistics Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, (202) 720-2707. Copies of this information collection and related instructions can be obtained without charge from David Hancock, NASS—OMB Clearance Officer, at (202) 690-2388 or at ombofficer@nass.usda.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: List Sampling Frame Surveys.

OMB Control Number: 0535-0140.

Expiration Date of Approval: January 31, 2019.

Type of Request: Intent to Seek Approval to Revise and Extend an Information Collection for a period of three years.

Abstract: The primary objective of the National Agricultural Statistics Service is to prepare and issue State and national estimates of crop and livestock production, economic statistics, environmental statistics related to agriculture and also to conduct the Census of Agriculture. The List Sampling Frame Surveys are used to develop and maintain a complete list of possible farm and ranch operations. The goal is to produce for each State a relatively complete, current, and unduplicated list of names for statistical sampling for agricultural operation surveys and the Census of Agriculture. Data from these agricultural surveys are used by government agencies and educational institutions in planning, farm policy analysis, and program administration. More importantly, farmers and ranchers use NASS data to help make informed business decisions on what commodities to produce and when is the optimal time to market their products. NASS data is useful to farmers in comparing their farming practices with the economic and environmental data published by NASS.

Authority: These data will be collected under the authority of 7 U.S.C. 2204(a). Individually identifiable data collected under this authority are governed by Section 1770 of the Food Security Act of 1985 as amended, 7 U.S.C. 2276, which requires USDA to afford strict confidentiality to non-aggregated data provided by respondents. This Notice is submitted in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-113) and the Office of Management and Budget regulations at 5 CFR part 1320.

NASS also complies with OMB Implementation Guidance, “Implementation Guidance for Title V of the E-Government Act, Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act of 2002 (CIPSEA),” Federal Register, Vol. 72, No. 115, June 15, 2007, p. 33376.

Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 10 to 15 minutes per respondent.

Respondents: Potential Farmers and Ranchers.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 675,000 (annual average).

Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: With an estimated response rate of approximately 65% NASS estimates the burden to be approximately 145,000 hours (annually).

Comments: Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency'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 on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, technological or other forms of information technology collection methods.

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

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Signed at Washington, DC, September 26, 2018.

Kevin L. Barnes,

Associate Administrator.

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[FR Doc. 2018-21612 Filed 10-3-18; 8:45 am]

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