[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 25 (Monday, February 8, 2016)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 6477-6479]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-02463]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement

30 CFR Part 936

[SATS No. OK-037-FOR; Docket ID: OSM-2015-0006; S1D1S SS08011000 
SX064A000 167S180110; S2D2S SS08011000 SX064A000 16XS501520]


Oklahoma Regulatory Program

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

ACTION: Proposed rule; public comment period and opportunity for public 
hearing on proposed amendment.

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SUMMARY: We, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement 
(OSMRE), are announcing receipt of a proposed amendment to the Oklahoma 
regulatory program (Oklahoma program) under the Surface Mining Control 
and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA or the Act). Oklahoma proposes 
revisions to its regulations regarding: Permit eligibility for permits 
with violations on lands eligible for remining; permit suspension or 
rescission posting locations and appeal procedures; requiring GPS 
coordinates for aspects of permit maps; topsoil removal distances; 
blasting records requirements; annual reporting requirements; temporary 
cessation of operations requirements; casing and sealing temporary 
underground openings; right of entry requirements; surface drainage 
associated with auger mining; correcting reference errors; updating 
addresses; and correcting spelling and grammatical errors. Oklahoma 
intends to revise its program to be no less effective than the Federal 
regulations and to improve operational efficiency.
    This document gives the times and locations that the Oklahoma 
program and this proposed amendment to that program are available for 
your inspection, the comment period during which you may submit written 
comments on the amendment, and the procedures that we will follow for 
the public hearing, if one is requested.

DATES: We will accept written comments on this amendment until 4:00 
p.m., central time, March 9, 2016. If requested, we will hold a public 
hearing on the amendment on March 4, 2016. We will accept requests to 
speak at a hearing until 4:00 p.m., central time on February 23, 2016.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by SATS No. OK-037-FOR, 
by any of the following methods:
     Mail/Hand Delivery: Director, Tulsa Field Office, Office 
of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1645 South 101st East 
Avenue, Suite 145, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74128-4629.
     Fax: (918) 581-6419.
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: The amendment has been 
assigned Docket ID OSM-2015-0006. If you would like to submit comments 
go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for 
submitting comments.
    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name 
and docket number for this rulemaking. For detailed instructions on 
submitting comments and additional information on the rulemaking 
process, see the ``Public Comment Procedures'' heading of the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.
    Docket: For access to the docket to review copies of the Oklahoma 
program, this amendment, a listing of any scheduled public hearings, 
and all written comments received in response to this document, you 
must go to the address listed below during normal business hours, 
Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. You may receive one free 
copy of the amendment by contacting OSMRE's Tulsa Field Office or the 
full text of the program amendment is available for you to read at 
www.regulations.gov.
    Elaine Ramsey, Director, Tulsa Field Office, Office of Surface 
Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1645 South 101st East Avenue, Suite 
145, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74128-4629.
    Telephone: (918) 581-6430.
    Email: eramsey@osmre.gov.
    In addition, you may review a copy of the amendment during regular 
business hours at the following location: Oklahoma Department of Mines, 
2915 N. Classen Blvd., Suite 213, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73106-5406. 
Telephone: (405) 427-3859.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Elaine Ramsey, Director, Tulsa Field 
Office. Telephone: (918) 581-6430.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
I. Background on the Oklahoma Program
II. Description of the Proposed Amendment
III. Public Comment Procedures
IV. Procedural Determinations

I. Background on the Oklahoma 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 program includes, among other things, ``. . . State law which 
provides for the regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation 
operations in accordance with the requirements of this Act . . .;

[[Page 6478]]

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 Oklahoma program on January 19, 1981. You 
can find background information on the Oklahoma program, including the 
Secretary's findings, the disposition of comments, and the conditions 
of approval of the Oklahoma program in the January 19, 1981, Federal 
Register (46 FR 4902). You can also find later actions concerning the 
Oklahoma program and program amendments at 30 CFR 936.10, 936.15, and 
936.16.

II. Description of the Proposed Amendment

    By letter dated September 25, 2015 (Administrative Record No. OK-
1003), Oklahoma sent us an amendment to its program under SMCRA (30 
U.S.C. 1201 et seq.). Oklahoma submitted the proposed amendment on its 
own initiative. Below is a summary of Oklahoma's proposed changes. The 
full text of the program amendment is available for you to read at the 
locations listed above under ADDRESSES or at www.regulations.gov.
    Oklahoma proposes to make substantive changes to Title 460. 
Department of Mines: Chapter 20, The Permanent Regulations Governing 
the Coal Reclamation Act of 1979, in the following subchapters. 
Additionally, Oklahoma plans on making several non-substantive changes 
throughout its regulations regarding updating addresses, correcting 
reference errors, grammatical corrections, and spelling errors.

1. Subchapter 15. Requirements for Permits and Permit Processing

    Oklahoma proposes to revoke section 460:20-15-6.7(a)(2)(A) 
regarding permits issued before September 30, 2004.
    Oklahoma proposes to add new a requirement that suspension or 
rescission notices be posted at the field office closest to the permit 
area at 460:20-15-10.1(c)(2)
    Oklahoma proposes to clarify the suspension and rescission appeal 
process at 460:20-15-10.1(d) and (e).

2. Subchapter 29. Underground Mining Permit Applications: Minimum 
Requirements for Information on Environmental Resources

    Oklahoma proposes to add the requirements for GPS coordinates for 
each building on permit application maps at section 460:20-29-10(4).
    Oklahoma proposes to add the permitting requirement to list the 
depth to mined coal in section 460:20-29-11(a)(5).

3. Subchapter 43. Permanent Program Performance Standards: Surface 
Mining Standards

    Oklahoma proposes to add language regarding minimum topsoil removal 
distance from the active pit in section 460:20-43-7(a)(1).
    Oklahoma proposes to add new language regarding blasting records in 
section 460:20-43-23.
    Oklahoma proposes to add new language regarding annual reporting 
requirements for contemporaneous reclamation in section 460:20-43-
37(2).
    Oklahoma proposes to add new language regarding qualification 
standards for temporary cessation of operations in section 460:20-43-
49(a) and (c).

4. Subchapter 45. Permanent Program Performance Standards: Underground 
Mining Activities

    Oklahoma proposes to add language regarding casing and sealing 
underground openings during temporary cessation of operations in 
section 460:20-45-5(c).
    Oklahoma proposes to add language regarding right of entry 
information in section 460:20-45-17(b).

5. Subchapter 47. Special Permanent Program Performance Standards: 
Auger Mining

    Oklahoma proposes to add new language regarding surface drainage 
during auger mining operations in section 460:20-47-4(d).

III. Public Comment Procedures

    Under the provisions of 30 CFR 732.17(h), we are seeking your 
comments on whether the amendment satisfies the applicable program 
approval criteria of 30 CFR 732.15. If we approve the amendment, it 
will become part of the State program.

Electronic or Written Comments

    If you submit written comments, they should be specific, confined 
to issues pertinent to the proposed regulations, and explain the reason 
for any recommended change(s). We appreciate any and all comments, but 
those most useful and likely to influence decisions on the final 
regulations will be those that either involve personal experience or 
include citations to and analyses of SMCRA, its legislative history, 
its implementing regulations, case law, other pertinent State or 
Federal laws or regulations, technical literature, or other relevant 
publications.
    We cannot ensure that comments received after the close of the 
comment period (see DATES) or sent to an address other than those 
listed (see ADDRESSES) will be included in the docket for this 
rulemaking and considered.

Public Availability of Comments

    Before including your address, phone number, email address, or 
other personally identifiable information in your comment, you should 
be aware that your entire comment including your personally 
identifiable information, may be made publicly available at any time. 
While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personally 
identifiable information from public review, we cannot guarantee that 
we will be able to do so.

Public Hearing

    If you wish to speak at the public hearing, contact the person 
listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT by 4:00 p.m., central time 
on February 23, 2016. If you are disabled and need reasonable 
accommodations to attend a public hearing, contact the person listed 
under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. We will arrange the location and 
time of the hearing with those persons requesting the hearing. If no 
one requests an opportunity to speak, we will not hold a hearing.
    To assist the transcriber and ensure an accurate record, we 
request, if possible, that each person who speaks at the public hearing 
provide us with a written copy of his or her comments. The public 
hearing will continue on the specified date until everyone scheduled to 
speak has been given an opportunity to be heard. If you are in the 
audience and have not been scheduled to speak and wish to do so, you 
will be allowed to speak after those who have been scheduled. We will 
end the hearing after everyone scheduled to speak and others present in 
the audience who wish to speak, have been heard.

Public Meeting

    If only one person requests an opportunity to speak, we may hold a 
public meeting rather than a public hearing. If you wish to meet with 
us to discuss the amendment, please request a meeting by contacting the 
person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All such meetings 
are open to the public and, if possible, we will post notices of 
meetings at the locations listed under ADDRESSES. We will make a 
written summary of each meeting a part of the administrative record.

[[Page 6479]]

IV. Procedural Determinations

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.

Other Laws and Executive Orders Affecting Rulemaking

    When a State submits a program amendment to OSMRE for review, our 
regulations at 30 CFR 732.17(h) require us to publish a notice in the 
Federal Register indicating receipt of the proposed amendment, its text 
or a summary of its terms, and an opportunity for public comment. We 
conclude our review of the proposed amendment after the close of the 
public comment period and determine whether the amendment should be 
approved, approved in part, or not approved. At that time, we will also 
make the determinations and certifications required by the various laws 
and executive orders governing the rulemaking process and include them 
in the final rule.

List of Subjects in 30 CFR Part 936

    Intergovernmental relations, Surface mining, Underground mining.

    Dated: October 15, 2015.
Ervin J. Barchenger,
Regional Director, Mid-Continent Region.

    Note:  This document was received by the Office the Federal 
Register on February 3, 2016.

[FR Doc. 2016-02463 Filed 2-5-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4310-05-P