[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 20 (Tuesday, January 31, 2006)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 5005-5008]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 06-881]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement

30 CFR Part 915

[Docket No. IA-015-FOR]


Iowa Regulatory Program

AGENCY: Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Interior.

ACTION: Final rule; approval of amendment.

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SUMMARY: We, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement 
(OSM), are approving an amendment to the Iowa regulatory program (Iowa 
program) under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 
(SMCRA or the Act). Iowa proposed to amend its rules regarding its 
small operator assistance program. Iowa intends to revise its program 
to be consistent with the corresponding Federal regulations and SMCRA.

EFFECTIVE DATE: January 31, 2006.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Andrew R. Gilmore, Chief, Alton Field 
Division. Telephone: (618) 463-6460. E-mail: IFOMAIL@osmre.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background on the Iowa Program
II. Submission of the Amendment
III. OSM's Findings
IV. Summary and Disposition of Comments
V. OSM's Decision
VI. Procedural Determinations

I. Background on the Iowa Program

    Section 503(a) of the Act permits a State to assume primacy for the 
regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation operations on non-
Federal and non-Indian lands within its borders by demonstrating that 
its State program includes, among other things, ``a State law which 
provides for the regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation 
operations in accordance with the requirements of this Act * * *; and 
rules and regulations consistent with regulations issued by the 
Secretary pursuant to this Act.'' See 30 U.S.C. 1253(a)(1) and (7). On 
the basis of these criteria, the Secretary of the Interior 
conditionally approved the Iowa program effective April 10, 1981. You 
can find background information on the Iowa program, including the 
Secretary's findings, the disposition of comments, and conditions of 
approval, in the January 21, 1981, Federal Register (46 FR 5885). You 
can also find later actions concerning Iowa's program and program 
amendments at 30 CFR 915.10, 915.15, and 915.16.

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II. Submission of the Amendment

    By letter dated August 19, 2005 (Administrative Record No. IA-450), 
the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Division of 
Soil Conservation (IDSC) sent us a copy of the coal mine rules that it 
had adopted on March 30, 2005. Included in the adopted rules were 
changes to Iowa Administrative Code (IAC) 27-40.41(207) regarding 
Iowa's small operator assistance program that we had not previously 
approved. Iowa proposed the changes in response to a required program 
amendment at 30 CFR 915.16(b) that we codified on June 1, 2004 (69 FR 
30821).
    We announced receipt of the amendment in the October 18, 2005, 
Federal Register (70 FR 60478). In the same document, we opened the 
public comment period and provided an opportunity for a public hearing 
or meeting on the adequacy of the amendment. We did not hold a public 
hearing or meeting because no one requested one. The public comment 
period ended on November 17, 2005. We did not receive any comments.

III. OSM's Findings

    Following are the findings we made concerning the amendment under 
SMCRA and the Federal regulations at 30 CFR 732.15 and 732.17. We are 
approving the amendment as described below.

IAC 27-40.41(207) Permanent Regulatory Program--Small Operator 
Assistance Program

    On June 1, 2004 (69 FR 30821), we codified a required program 
amendment at 30 CFR 915.16(b). We required Iowa to revise Iowa Code 
section 207.4(1)(d) to include the revisions that were made to section 
507(c)(1) of SMCRA on November 5, 1990, and October 24, 1992, before 
implementing its rule at IAC 27-40.41(207). The revisions to SMCRA 
changed the eligibility requirements for small operator assistance 
program participation by (1) increasing probable total annual 
production of coal from all locations of a coal surface mining 
operation from 100,000 tons to 300,000 tons and (2) increasing the 
types of technical services that are eligible for funding. The Federal 
regulations at 30 CFR 795.6(a)(2) and 795.9(b)(3) through 795.9(b)(6) 
implement the revisions made to section 507(c)(1) of SMCRA. In response 
to our required amendment, Iowa proposed to incorporate the 
requirements of 30 CFR 915.16(b) in its rule at IAC 27-40.41(207) 
instead of updating its statute at Iowa Code section 207.4(1)(d). IAC 
27-40.41(207) adopts 30 CFR part 795, as in effect on July 1, 2002, by 
reference. More specifically Iowa proposed to add subrules IAC 27-
40.41(3) and 40.41(4). These subrules read as follows:

Subrule IAC 27-40.41(3)

    Eligibility thresholds for annual production in tons at 30 CFR 
795.6(a)(2) shall not apply until the same threshold at Iowa Code 
section 207.4(1)(d) has been amended from 100,000 tons to 300,000 
tons.

Subrule IAC 27-40.41(4)

    Program services at 30 CFR 795.9(b)(3) through 795.9(b)(6) shall 
not apply until Iowa Code section 207.4(1)(d) has been amended to 
authorize these services.

    As shown above, new subrules IAC 27-40.41(3) and 40.41(4) do not 
allow Iowa to implement its small operator assistance program until 
Iowa Code section 207.4(1)(d) is revised to authorize the new 
eligibility requirements for small operator assistance. Currently, Iowa 
is not implementing a small operator assistance program and does not 
have any potential operators that may qualify for program assistance. 
Therefore, we are approving subrules IAC 27-40.41(3) and 40.41(4) as 
acceptable responses to 30 CFR 915.16(b), and we are removing the 
required amendment.

IV. Summary and Disposition of Comments

Public Comments

    We asked for public comments on the amendment, but did not receive 
any.

Federal Agency Comments

    Under 30 CFR 732.17(h)(11)(i) and section 503(b) of SMCRA, we 
requested comments on the amendment from various Federal agencies with 
an actual or potential interest in the Iowa program (Administrative 
Record No. IA-450.1). We did not receive any comments.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Concurrence and Comments

    Under 30 CFR 732.17(h)(11)(ii), we are required to get a written 
concurrence from EPA for those provisions of the program amendment that 
relate to air or water quality standards issued under the authority of 
the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.) or the Clean Air Act (42 
U.S.C. 7401 et seq.). None of the revisions that Iowa proposed to make 
in this amendment pertain to air or water quality standards. Therefore, 
we did not ask EPA to concur on the amendment.
    Under 30 CFR 732.17(h)(11)(i), we requested comments on the 
amendment from EPA (Administrative Record No. IA-450.1). EPA did not 
respond to our request.

State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) and the Advisory Council on 
Historic Preservation (ACHP)

    Under 30 CFR 732.17(h)(4), we are required to request comments from 
the SHPO and ACHP on amendments that may have an effect on historic 
properties. On September 2, 2005, we requested comments on Iowa's 
amendment (Administrative Record No. IA-450.1), but neither responded 
to our request.

V. OSM's Decision

    Based on the above findings, we approve the amendment Iowa sent us 
on August 19, 2005.
    We approve the rules proposed by Iowa with the provision that they 
be fully promulgated in identical form to the rules submitted to and 
reviewed by OSM and the public.
    To implement this decision, we are amending the Federal regulations 
at 30 CFR part 915, which codify decisions concerning the Iowa program. 
We find that good cause exists under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to make this 
final rule effective immediately. Section 503(a) of SMCRA requires that 
the State's program demonstrate that the State has the capability of 
carrying out the provisions of the Act and meeting its purposes. Making 
this rule effective immediately will expedite that process. SMCRA 
requires consistency of State and Federal standards.

VI. Procedural Determinations

Executive Order 12630--Takings

    This rule does not have takings implications. This determination is 
based on the analysis performed for the counterpart Federal regulation.

Executive Order 12866--Regulatory Planning and Review

    This rule is exempted from review by the Office of Management and 
Budget (OMB) under Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 12988--Civil Justice Reform

    The Department of the Interior has conducted the reviews required 
by section 3 of Executive Order 12988 and has determined that this rule 
meets the applicable standards of subsections (a) and (b) of that 
section. However, these standards are not applicable to the actual 
language of State regulatory programs and program amendments because 
each program is drafted and promulgated by a specific State, not by 
OSM. Under sections 503 and 505 of SMCRA (30 U.S.C. 1253 and 1255) and 
the Federal regulations at 30 CFR 730.11, 732.15, and 732.17(h)(10),

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decisions on proposed State regulatory programs and program amendments 
submitted by the States must be based solely on a determination of 
whether the submittal is consistent with SMCRA and its implementing 
Federal regulations and whether the other requirements of 30 CFR parts 
730, 731, and 732 have been met.

Executive Order 13132--Federalism

    This rule does not have Federalism implications. SMCRA delineates 
the roles of the Federal and State governments with regard to the 
regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation operations. One of 
the purposes of SMCRA is to ``establish a nationwide program to protect 
society and the environment from the adverse effects of surface coal 
mining operations.'' Section 503(a)(1) of SMCRA requires that State 
laws regulating surface coal mining and reclamation operations be ``in 
accordance with'' requirements of SMCRA, and section 503(a)(7) requires 
that State programs contain rules and regulations ``consistent with'' 
regulations issued by the Secretary pursuant to SMCRA.

Executive Order 13175--Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal 
Governments

    In accordance with Executive Order 13175, we have evaluated the 
potential effects of this rule on Federally-recognized Indian tribes 
and have determined that the rule does not have substantial direct 
effects on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the 
Federal Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power 
and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes. 
This determination is based on the fact that the Iowa program does not 
regulate coal exploration and surface coal mining and reclamation 
operations on Indian lands. Therefore, the Iowa program has no effect 
on Federally-recognized Indian tribes.

Executive Order 13211--Regulations That Significantly Affect the 
Supply, Distribution, or Use of Energy

    On May 18, 2001, the President issued Executive Order 13211 which 
requires agencies to prepare a Statement of Energy Effects for a rule 
that is (1) considered significant under Executive Order 12866, and (2) 
likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, 
distribution, or use of energy. Because this rule is exempt from review 
under Executive Order 12866 and is not expected to have a significant 
adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy, a 
Statement of Energy Effects is not required.

National Environmental Policy Act

    This rule does not require an environmental impact statement 
because section 702(d) of SMCRA (30 U.S.C. 1292(d)) provides that 
agency decisions on proposed State regulatory program provisions do not 
constitute major Federal actions within the meaning of section 
102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act (42 U.S.C. 
4332(2)(C)).

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This rule does not contain information collection requirements that 
require approval by OMB under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 
3507 et seq.).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Department of the Interior certifies that this rule will not 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). 
The State submittal, which is the subject of this rule, is based upon 
counterpart Federal regulations for which an economic analysis was 
prepared and certification made that such regulations would not have a 
significant economic effect upon a substantial number of small 
entities. In making the determination as to whether this rule would 
have a significant economic impact, the Department relied upon the data 
and assumptions for the counterpart Federal regulations.

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. This rule: (a) Does not 
have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million; (b) Will not 
cause a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual 
industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic 
regions; and (c) Does not have significant adverse effects on 
competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the 
ability of U.S.-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based 
enterprises. This determination is based upon the fact that the State 
submittal, which is the subject of this rule, is based upon counterpart 
Federal regulations for which an analysis was prepared and a 
determination made that the Federal regulation was not considered a 
major rule.

Unfunded Mandates

    This rule will not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or 
tribal governments or the private sector of $100 million or more in any 
given year. This determination is based upon the fact that the State 
submittal, which is the subject of this rule, is based upon counterpart 
Federal regulations for which an analysis was prepared and a 
determination made that the Federal regulation did not impose an 
unfunded mandate.

List of Subjects in 30 CFR Part 915

    Intergovernmental relations, Surface mining, Underground mining.

    Dated: December 28, 2005.
Charles E. Sandberg,
Regional Director, Mid-Continent Region.

0
For the reasons set out in the preamble, 30 CFR part 915 is amended as 
set forth below:

PART 915--IOWA

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1. The authority citation for part 915 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  30 U.S.C. 1201 et seq.


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2. Section 915.15 is amended in the table by adding a new entry in 
chronological order by ``Date of final publication'' to read as 
follows:


Sec.  915.15  Approval of Iowa regulatory program amendments.

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                                           Date of final
 Original amendment submission date         publication                       Citation/description
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                                                  * * * * * * *
August 19, 2005.....................  January 31, 2006.......  IAC 27C40.41(3) and 40.41(4).
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3. Amend Sec.  915.16 as follows:
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a. Revise the section heading to read as set forth below; and
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b. Remove and reserve the text, in its entirety, of the section.


Sec.  915.16   Required program amendments. [Reserved]

[FR Doc. 06-881 Filed 1-30-05; 8:45 am]
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