[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 251 (Wednesday, December 31, 2008)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 80313-80314]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-31127]

Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.


Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 251 / Wednesday, December 31, 2008 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 80313]]


17 CFR Part 200

[Release No. 34-59150; File No. S7-33-08]

Records Services, Fee Schedule

AGENCY: Securities and Exchange Commission.

ACTION: Proposed rule.


SUMMARY: The Securities and Exchange Commission (``Commission'') is 
soliciting comments on a proposed amendment to its regulation governing 
the fees for records services. The Commission's schedule of fees for 
records services will be updated using a formula for the calculation of 
fees under the Freedom of Information Act (``FOIA'') and language that 
directs FOIA requesters to the Commission's Web site. Using a formula, 
instead of set rates, will allow the Commission to charge fees that 
reflect its allowable direct costs.

DATES: Comments should be received on or before January 30, 2009.

ADDRESSES: Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

Electronic Comments

     Use the Commission's Internet comment form (http://www.sec.gov/rules/proposed.shtml);
     Send an e-mail to [email protected]. Please include 
File Number S7-33-08 on the subject line; or
     Use the Federal eRulemaking Portal (http://www.regulations.gov). Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

Paper Comments

     Send paper comments in triplicate to Secretary, Securities 
and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549-1090.

All submissions should refer to File Number S7-33-08. This file number 
should be included on the subject line if e-mail is used. To help us 
process and review your comments more efficiently, please use only one 
method. The Commission will post all comments on the Commission's 
Internet Web site (http://www.sec.gov/rules/proposed.shtml). Comments 
are also available for public inspection and copying in the 
Commission's Public Reference Room, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 
20549 on official business days between the hours of 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. 
All comments received will be posted without change; we do not edit 
personal identifying information from submissions. You should submit 
only information that you wish to make available publicly.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Melinda Hardy, Assistant General 
Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, (202) 551-5149; Securities and 
Exchange Commission, 100 F Street, NE., Washington, DC 20549-9612.


I. Discussion

    The fees the Commission charges for searching, reviewing, and 
duplicating records pursuant to FOIA requests are set forth in 17 CFR 
200.80e [Schedule of fees for records services]. The Commission 
believes it is appropriate to update its fee schedule for searching and 
reviewing records to comply with guidelines promulgated by the Office 
of Management and Budget, Uniform Freedom of Information Act Fee 
Schedule and Guidelines, 52 FR 10,012, 10,018 (Mar. 27, 1987) (``OMB 
Guidance''), which instructs agencies to charge fees that recoup the 
full allowable direct costs that they incur. The OMB Guidance states 
that agencies may charge the average basic pay rate of employees 
routinely performing these services plus 16% to cover associated 
benefits. Id. Also, ``agencies may establish an average rate for the 
range of grades typically involved.'' Id.
    The current regulation contains set rates for FOIA request search 
and review activities: $16/hour for grade 11 and below; and $28/hour 
for grade 12 and above. The Commission is proposing to revise the 
regulation to provide the formula contained in the OMB Guidance rather 
than a set price. Moreover, the proposed regulation provides that the 
Commission will establish an average rate for each of the three 
different groups of grades typically involved: Personnel in grades SK 8 
or below; personnel in grades SK 9 to 13; and personnel in grades SK 14 
or above.\1\ The Commission's Web site will contain current rates for 
search and review fees for each class. The rates will be updated when 
salaries change and will be determined by using the formula in the 
regulation and averaging the hourly rate of the different groups of 
grades of staff who routinely perform these duties. For the current 
calendar year, the fees would be assessed as follows: SK 8 or below: 
$26/hour; SK 9 to 13: $40/hour; and SK 14 or above: $70/hour. The cost 
of the average fee collection activity is $20; therefore, no fee will 
be charged of $20 or less. See 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(A)(iv) (providing 
that no fee may be charged if fee exceeds costs of collecting and 
processing fee).

    \1\ Fees for searches of computerized records will continue to 
be based on the actual cost to the Commission which includes machine 
and operator time. 17 CFR 200.80(e)(9)(i).

II. Statutory Basis

    The Commission is proposing amendments to 17 CFR part 200 pursuant 
to 5 U.S.C. 552 and 15 U.S.C. 78d-1.

List of Subjects in 17 CFR Part 200

    Administrative practice and procedure, Freedom of information, 
Organization and functions.

III. Text of Proposed Amendments

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, Title 17 Chapter II of 
the Code of Federal Regulations is proposed to be amended as follows:


Subpart D--Information and Requests

    1. The general authority citation for Part 200, subpart D, is 
revised to read as follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 552, as amended, 15 U.S.C. 77f(d), 77s, 
77ggg(a), 77sss, 78m(F)(3), 78w, 80a-37, 80a-44(a), 80a-44(b), 80b-
10(a), 80b-11.
* * * * *
    2. Section 200.80e, first paragraph, is revised to read as follows:

Sec.  200.80e  Appendix E--Schedule of fees for records services.

    Search and review services: The average salary rates (i.e., basic 
pay plus

[[Page 80314]]

16%) of employees performing these services. The hourly rates are 
listed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.sec.gov/foia/feesche.htm.
* * * * *

    By the Commission.

    Dated: December 23, 2008.
Florence E. Harmon,
Acting Secretary.
[FR Doc. E8-31127 Filed 12-30-08; 8:45 am]