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Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Applications and Reports for Registration as a Tanner or Agent

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National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.




The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.


To ensure consideration, written or on-line comments must be submitted on or before March 9, 2020.


Direct all written comments to Adrienne Thomas, PRA Officer, NOAA, 151 Patton Avenue, Room 159, Asheville, NC 28801 (or via the internet at All comments received are part of the public record. Comments will generally be posted without change. All Personally Identifiable Information (for example, name and address) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit Confidential Business Information or otherwise sensitive or protected information.

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Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should be directed to Jerod Cook, (907) 772-2285; or Robert Marvelle (907) 586-9329;

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I. Abstract

The Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) mandates the protection and conservation of marine mammals and makes the taking, killing or serious injury of marine mammals, except under permit or exemption, a violation of the Act. An exemption is provided for Alaskan natives to take marine mammals if the taking is for subsistence or for creating and selling authentic native articles of handicraft and Start Printed Page 673clothing. Possession of marine mammals and marine mammal parts by other than Alaskan natives is therefore prohibited (exception, 50 CFR 216.26: Beach found non-Endangered Species Act (ESA) teeth or bones that have been registered with NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)). As native handicrafts are allowed by the MMPA to enter interstate commerce, an exemption is also needed to allow non-natives to handle the skins or other marine mammal produce, whether to tan the pinniped hide or to act as an agent for the native to sell his handicraft products. The information is necessary for law enforcement purposes to ensure that only Alaska Indians, Aleuts, or Eskimos are submitting marine mammal hides or parts for tanning.

The information required by 50 CFR 216.23 is of two types. Applications: Information is required to identify the applicant as a tanner/agent in order to preclude prosecution under the MMPA and to determine that he/she has an acceptable record keeping program to accurately account for those marine mammal products received. This information serves as a deterrent for those individuals who might use this registration program for entering prohibited marine mammal products into interstate commerce. Reports: Information is also needed annually to evaluate the agent/tanner's activities during the year, and his/her procedures for bookkeeping and yearly inventory to assure NMFS, the Marine Mammal Commission, and the general public that prohibited marine mammal products were not being transshipped through registered agents.

The reporting requirements are: Report in writing to the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NMFS, any changes in the facts stated in Registrant's applications for this Certificate of Registration within 30 days of such change; maintain current records of each transaction authorized stating the marine mammals or marine mammal parts or products involved, from whom received, any processing accomplished, to whom returned, and the date of each such transaction. These records shall be kept separate and apart from other records maintained in the ordinary course of business and shall be retrained for not less than three years; and annually, during the month of January, send certified copies of such records (annual report) to the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries.

II. Method of Collection

Paper documentation is submitted to meet the requirements found at 50 CFR 216.23(c).

III. Data

OMB Number: 0648-0179.

Form Number: None.

Type of Review: Regular submission (extension of an existing information collection).

Affected Public: Business or other for profit organizations.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 50.

Estimated Time per Response: 2 hours for an application and 2 hours for a report.

Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 100.

Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $175.00.

IV. Request for 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 shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (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 respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval of this information collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

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Sheleen Dumas,

Department PRA Clearance Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Commerce Department.

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[FR Doc. 2020-00005 Filed 1-6-20; 8:45 am]