[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 190 (Tuesday, October 1, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 60208-60216]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-23874]



Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement

30 CFR Part 250

[Docket ID: BSEE-2013-0007; 134E1700D2 EEAA103000 ET1EX0000.PEA000]
RIN 1014-AA12

Oil and Gas and Sulphur Operations in the Outer Continental 
Shelf--Adjustment of Service Fees

AGENCY: Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), 

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: This final rule amends the BSEE oil and gas resources 
regulations to update some fees that cover BSEE's cost of processing 
and filing certain documents relating to its oil and gas resources 

DATES: This final rule becomes effective on October 1, 2013.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Angela Mazzullo, Office of the Deputy 
Director, 202-208-5122 or Amy C. White, Chief, Regulations and 
Standards Branch, 703-787-1665.



    The BSEE promotes safety, protects the environment, and conserves 
offshore oil and gas resources through vigorous regulatory oversight 
and enforcement. The BSEE was established on October 1, 2011, as part 
of a major restructuring of the Department of the Interior's (DOI) 
offshore regulatory programs. The Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) 
announced the new division of responsibilities of the former Minerals 
Management Service (MMS) into three new bureaus within DOI in 
Secretarial Order No. 3299, issued on May 19, 2010. The BSEE, one of 
the three new bureaus, assumed responsibility for ``safety and 
environmental enforcement functions including, but not limited to, the 
authority to permit activities, inspect, investigate, summon witnesses 
and produce evidence[;] levy penalties; cancel or suspend activities; 
and oversee safety, response and removal preparedness'' (76 FR 64432).

II. BSEE Statutory and Regulatory Authority

    The BSEE derives its authority from the Outer Continental Shelf 
Lands Act (OCSLA)(43 U.S.C. 1331-1356(a). Congress enacted OCSLA in 
1953, establishing Federal control over the Outer Continental Shelf 
(OCS) and

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authorizing the Secretary to regulate oil and gas exploration, 
development, and production operations on the OCS. The Secretary has 
authorized BSEE to perform these functions (30 CFR 250.101).
    The BSEE regulatory program is comprehensive and provides 
regulatory oversight over a wide range of facilities and activities 
including drilling, completion, workover production, pipeline, and 
decommissioning operations. To carry out its responsibilities, BSEE 
develops and enforces regulations to enhance safety and environmental 
protection for offshore exploration and development of oil and natural 
gas on the OCS and to reflect advancements in technology and new 
information. The BSEE also conducts onsite inspections to assure 
compliance with regulations, lease terms, and approved plans and 
operates an oil spill response program. Detailed information concerning 
BSEE's regulations and guidance to the offshore industry may be found 
on BSEE's Web site at http://www.bsee.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/index.aspx.

III. Background

    The BSEE has authority to recover the full cost of services that 
confer special benefits under the Independent Offices Appropriation Act 
(31 U.S.C. 9701), the Omnibus Appropriations Bill (Pub. L. 104-133, 110 
Stat. 1321, April 26, 1996), and the Office of Management and Budget 
(OMB) Circular A-25. Under DOI's implementing policy, BSEE is required 
to charge the full cost for services that provide special benefits or 
privileges to an identifiable non-Federal recipient above and beyond 
those which accrue to the public at large. At 30 CFR 250.125(a), the 
regulations provide that BSEE will periodically adjust fees for 
inflation according to changes in the Implicit Price Deflator for Gross 
Domestic Product (IPD-GDP), which is published quarterly by the U.S. 
Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA).
    The DOI finds that good cause exists under the Administrative 
Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B)) to implement this final rule without 
prior public notice and comment for these inflation adjustments. The 
BSEE provided the public with an opportunity to comment on this 
procedure during the public comment period when it promulgated 30 CFR 
250.125(a), and this new rule simply implements the procedure set forth 
in that regulation. The calculation of these adjustments is based on 
the change in the BEA IPD-GDP. The amount of the adjustment is not 
within BSEE's discretion. Accordingly, public notice and comment 
procedures are unnecessary.
    The DOI also finds that good cause exists under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) 
to implement this final rule with an effective date sooner than 30 days 
after publication. An effective date of October 1, 2013 allows BSEE to 
align implementation of the final rule with the beginning of the fiscal 
year. This final rule will not affect the operations of the parties to 
which it applies. These parties will only need to increase the dollar 
amount of the cost recovery fee payments that are prospectively 
submitted to BSEE. Accordingly, waiting 30 days after publication to 
make this final rule effective is unnecessary.

IV. Discussion of Final Rule

    In this final rule, BSEE is adjusting cost recovery service fees to 
account for inflation in accordance with 30 CFR 250.125(a). These cost 
recovery service fees were last updated on August 25, 2008, when the 
MMS published a final rule on Electronic Payment of Fees for Outer 
Continental Shelf Activities in the Federal Register (73 FR 49943). The 
2008 update included fee adjustment through the year 2007. This final 
rule is based on the change in the IPD-GDP from 2007 through 2012, thus 
reflecting the rate of inflation over 5 years.
    The inflation rate between any 2 years is calculated as the 
percentage difference between the measure of the level of prices for a 
designated year (e.g., 2012) and some previous year (e.g., 2007) of all 
new, domestically produced, final goods and services in the economy for 
the designated year (e.g., 2012), as contained in the BEA Table 1.1.9, 
IPD-GDP available at http://www.bea.gov/iTable/index_nipa.cfm. The BEA 
Table 1.1.9 IPD-GDP shows a percentage difference between the measure 
of the level of prices between 2012 and 2007 of 7.87 percent. The 2013 
cost recovery service fees are calculated by increasing the 2008 cost 
recovery service fee value by 7.87 percent. The calculated value is 
rounded to the nearest dollar to establish the 2013 cost recovery 
service fee.
    While BEA may revise the inflation rate in the future, BSEE will 
retain this published cost recovery service fee schedule until BSEE 
publishes an updated cost recovery service fee schedule in the Federal 
    The following table lists the cost recovery service fees that are 
affected by this rulemaking. The BSEE is also making a few minor 
revisions to the numbering of the cost recovery service fees and the 30 
CFR citations in the cost recovery service fee table in 30 CFR 

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Procedural Matters

Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Order 12866)

    The OMB has not designated this rule as significant under Executive 
Order (E.O.) 12866.
    (1) These amendments are administrative and procedural. This rule 
will not have an effect of $100 million or more on the economy. It will 
not adversely affect in a material way the economy, productivity, 
competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, 
local, or tribal governments or communities. A cost-benefit and 
economic analysis is not required.
    (2) This rule will not create a serious inconsistency or otherwise 
interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency.
    (3) This rule will not alter the budgetary effects of entitlements, 
grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights or obligations of 
their recipients.
    (4) This rule does not raise novel legal or policy issues.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The DOI certifies that this rule will not have a significant 
economic effect on a substantial number of small entities under the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.).
    The changes in the rule will affect lessees and pipeline right-of-
way holders in the OCS. This includes about 130 Federal oil and gas 
lessees and 115 holders of pipeline rights-of-way. Small lessees that 
operate under this rule fall under the Small Business Administration's 
North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes 211111, 
Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction, and 213111, Drilling Oil 
and Gas Wells. For these NAICS code classifications, a small company is 
one with fewer than 500 employees. Based on these criteria, an 
estimated 69 percent of these companies are considered small.
    This final rule, therefore, will affect a substantial number of 
small entities, but BSEE has concluded that it will not have a 
significant economic effect on those entities. The cost recovery 
service fees increase less than 8 percent as a result of this final 
rule. The highest adjustment, in dollar terms, is for Platform 
Application--Installation--Under the Platform Verification Program, 
which will be increased by $1,659. This dollar amount is insignificant 
as compared to the considerable operational costs and liability risks 
associated with activities on the OCS.
    Your comments are important. The Small Business and Agriculture 
Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman and 10 Regional Fairness Boards were 
established to receive comments from small businesses about Federal 

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enforcement actions. The Ombudsman will annually evaluate the 
enforcement activities and rate each agency's responsiveness to small 
business. If you wish to comment on the actions of BSEE, call 1-888-
734-3247. You may comment to the Small Business Administration without 
fear of retaliation. Allegations of discrimination/retaliation filed 
with the Small Business Administration will be investigated for 
appropriate action.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

    This rule is not a major rule under the Small Business Regulatory 
Enforcement Fairness Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.). This rule:
    a. Will not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or 
    b. Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for 
consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government 
agencies, or geographic regions.
    c. Will 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. The 
requirements will apply to all entities operating on the OCS.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    This rule will not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or 
tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per 
year. The rule will 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. 1501 et seq.) is not required.

Takings Implication Assessment (E.O. 12630)

    According to E.O. 12630, the rule does not have significant takings 
implications. The rulemaking is not a governmental action capable of 
interfering with constitutionally protected property rights. A Takings 
Implication Assessment is not required.

Federalism (E.O. 13132)

    Under the criteria in E.O. 13132, this rulemaking does not have 
federalism implications. This rule will not substantially and directly 
affect the relationship between the Federal and State governments. To 
the extent that State and local governments have a role in OCS 
activities, this rule will not affect that role. A Federalism 
Assessment is not required.

Civil Justice Reform (E.O. 12988)

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

Consultation With Indian Tribes (E.O. 13175)

    Under the criteria in E.O. 13175, we evaluated this rule and 
determined that it has no substantial effects on federally recognized 
Indian tribes.

Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995

    This rule does not contain new information collection requirements 
and a submission under the PRA is not required. Therefore, an 
information collection request is not being submitted to OMB for review 
and approval under the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA)

    This rule does not constitute a major Federal action significantly 
affecting the quality of the human environment. The BSEE has analyzed 
this rule under the criteria of NEPA and DOI's regulations implementing 
NEPA. This rule meets the criteria set forth at 43 CFR 46.210(i) for a 
Departmental Categorical Exclusion in that this rule is ``. . . of an 
administrative, financial, legal, technical, or procedural nature . . 
.'' Further, BSEE has analyzed this rule to determine if it meets any 
of the extraordinary circumstances that would require an environmental 
assessment or an environmental impact statement as set forth in 43 CFR 
46.215 and concluded that this rule does not meet any of the criteria 
for extraordinary circumstances.

Data Quality Act

    In developing this rule, we did not conduct or use a study, 
experiment, or survey requiring peer review under the Data Quality Act 
(Pub. L.106-554, app. C Sec.  515, 114 Stat. 2763, 2763A-153-154).

Effects on the Nation's Energy Supply (E.O. 13211)

    This rulemaking is not a significant energy action under the 
definition in E.O. 13211. A Statement of Energy Effects is not 

List of Subjects in 30 CFR Part 250

    Administrative practice and procedure, Continental shelf, Oil and 
gas exploration, Pipelines, Public lands--mineral resources, Public 
lands--rights-of-way, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, and 

    Dated: September 23, 2013.
Tommy P. Beaudreau,
 Acting Assistant Secretary--Land and Minerals Management.
    For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Bureau of Safety and 
Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) amends 30 CFR part 250 as follows:


1. Authority citation for part 250 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  30 U.S.C. 1751; 31 U.S.C. 9701, 43 U.S.C. 1334.

2. Revise the table in Sec.  250.125(a) to read as follows:

Sec.  250.125  Service fees.

    (a) * * *

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[FR Doc. 2013-23874 Filed 9-30-13; 8:45 am]