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Change of Address; Indian Child Welfare Act

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Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.


Final rule; technical amendment.


The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is amending its regulations to reflect a change of addresses for filing copies of Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) notices to the Alaska Regional Director and Midwest Regional Director, and to update the mail stop for BIA's Central Office in Washington, DC for filing ICWA adoption notices. This rule is a technical amendment that corrects the addresses for filing ICWA documents with the Alaska Regional Director, Midwest Regional Director, and Central Office in Washington, DC.


Effective November 5, 2018.

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Elizabeth Appel, Director, Office of Regulatory Affairs & Collaborative Action, (202) 273-4680;

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ICWA requires, in any involuntary proceeding, the party seeking foster-care placement of, or termination of parental rights to, an Indian child must notify the parents, Indian custodians, and child's Tribe and send a copy to the appropriate BIA Regional Director. This notice updates the addresses for two of the Regional Director offices. ICWA also requires that any State court entering a final adoption decree or order in any Indian child adoptive placement furnish a copy of the decree or order to BIA Chief of Human Services at BIA's Central Office. This rule also updates the mail stop for Central Office in Washington, DC, because the mail stop has moved.

Procedural Requirements

A. Regulatory Planning and Review (E.O. 12866 and 13563)

Executive Order (E.O.) 12866 provides that the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will review all significant rules. OIRA has determined that this rule is not significant.

E.O. 13563 reaffirms the principles of E.O. 12866 while calling for improvements in the nation's regulatory system to promote predictability, to reduce uncertainty, and to use the best, most innovative, and least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory ends. The E.O. directs agencies to consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public where these approaches are relevant, feasible, and consistent with regulatory objectives. E.O. 13563 emphasizes further that regulations must be based on the best available science and that the rulemaking process must allow for public participation and an open exchange of ideas. The Department has developed this rule in a manner consistent with these requirements. Start Printed Page 55268

B. Regulatory Flexibility Act

This rule will not have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). The rule is administrative in nature and affects only mailing addresses.

C. Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. It will not result in the expenditure by State, local, or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million or more in any one year. The rule's requirements will not result in a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions. Nor will this rule have significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of the U.S.-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises.

D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

This rule does not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or Tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per year. The rule does not have a significant or unique effect on State, local, or Tribal governments or the private sector. A statement containing the information required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) is not required.

E. Takings (E.O. 12630)

Under the criteria in Executive Order 12630, this rule does not affect individual property rights protected by the Fifth Amendment nor does it involve a compensable “taking.” A takings implication assessment is therefore not required.

F. Federalism (E.O. 13132)

Under the criteria in Executive Order 13132, this rule has no substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. This rule corrects BIA mailing addresses.

G. Civil Justice Reform (E.O. 12988)

This rule complies with the requirements of Executive Order 12988. Specifically, this rule meets the criteria of section 3(a) requiring all regulations be reviewed to eliminate errors and ambiguity and be written to minimize litigation and meets the criteria of section 3(b)(2) requiring that all regulations be written in clear language and contain clear legal standards.

H. Consultation With Indian Tribes (E.O. 13175)

The Department strives to strengthen its government-to-government relationship with Indian Tribes through a commitment to consultation with Indian Tribes and recognition of their right to self-governance and Tribal sovereignty. We have evaluated this rule under the Department's consultation policy and under the criteria in Executive Order 13175 and have determined there are no potential effects on federally recognized Indian Tribes and Indian trust assets.

I. Paperwork Reduction Act

The Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., prohibits a Federal agency from conducting or sponsoring a collection of information that requires OMB approval, unless such approval has been obtained and the collection request displays a currently valid OMB control number. Nor is any person required to respond to an information collection request that has not complied with the PRA. This rule does not contain any information collections requiring approval under the PRA; however, OMB has approved the information collection requirements related to this rule under OMB Control No. 1076-1086.

J. National Environmental Policy Act

This rule does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment because it is of an administrative, technical, and procedural nature. See, 43 CFR 46.210(i). No extraordinary circumstances exist that would require greater review under the National Environmental Policy Act.

K. Effects on the Energy Supply (E.O. 13211)

This rule is not a significant energy action under the definition in Executive Order 13211. A Statement of Energy Effects is not required.

L. Determination To Issue Final Rule Without the Opportunity for Public Comment and With Immediate Effective Date

BIA is taking this action under its authority, at 5 U.S.C. 552, to publish regulations in the Federal Register. Under the Administrative Procedure Act, statutory procedures for agency rulemaking do not apply “when the agency for good cause finds . . . that notice and public procedure thereon are impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.” 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(B). BIA finds that the notice and comment procedure are impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest, because: (1) These amendments are non-substantive; and (2) the public benefits for timely notification of a change in the official agency address, and further delay is unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. Similarly because this final rule makes no substantive changes and merely reflects a change of address and updates to titles in the existing regulations, this final rule is not subject to the effective date limitation of 5 U.S.C. 553(d).

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List of Subjects in 25 CFR Part 23

  • Administrative practice and procedures
  • Child welfare
  • Grant programs—Indians
  • Grant programs—social programs
  • Indians
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
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For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, amends part 23 in title 25 of the Code of Federal Regulations as follows:

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1. The authority for part 23 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; 25 U.S.C. 2, 9, 1901-1952.

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2. In § 23.11, revise paragraphs (b)(2) and (7) to read as follows:

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(b) * * *

(2) For child-custody proceedings in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, or Wisconsin, notices must be sent to the following address: Minneapolis Regional Director, Bureau of Indian Affairs, 5600 American Blvd. W, Ste. 500, Bloomington, MN 55437.

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(7) For child-custody proceedings in Alaska (except for notices to the Metlakatla Indian Community, Annette Island Reserve, Alaska), notices must be sent to the following address: Alaska Regional Director—Attn: Human Services, Bureau of Indian Affairs, 3601 C Street, Suite 1258, Anchorage, Alaska 99503. Notices to the Metlakatla Indian Community, Annette Island Reserve, Alaska, must be sent to the Portland Regional Director at the address listed in paragraph (b)(11) of this section.

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3. In § 23.140, revise paragraph (a) introductory text to read as follows:

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What information must States furnish to the Bureau of Indian Affairs?

(a) Any State court entering a final adoption decree or order in any voluntary or involuntary Indian-child adoptive placement must furnish a copy of the decree or order within 30 days to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Chief, Division of Human Services, 1849 C Street NW, Mail Stop 3645 MIB, Washington, DC 20240, along with the following information, in an envelope marked “Confidential”:

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Dated: August 16, 2018.

Tara Sweeney,

Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs.

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[FR Doc. 2018-24173 Filed 11-2-18; 8:45 am]