[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 238 (Wednesday, December 13, 2017)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 58559-58562]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-26843]


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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 189S180110; S2D2S SS08011000 SX064A000 18XS501520]


Oklahoma 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 
(OSMRE), are approving an amendment to the Oklahoma regulatory program 
(Oklahoma program) under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act 
of 1977 (SMCRA or the Act). Oklahoma proposed 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 intended to revise 
its program to be no less effective than the Federal regulations and to 
improve operational efficiency.

DATES: The effective date is January 12, 2018.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bill Joseph, Director, Tulsa Field 
Office, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1645 
South 101st East Avenue, Suite 145, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74128-4629. 
Telephone: 918-581-6431 ext. 230. Email: bjoseph@osmre.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background on the Oklahoma Program
II. Submission of the Amendment
III. OSMRE's Findings
IV. Summary and Disposition of Comments
V. OSMRE's Decision
VI. 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 laws and regulations 
that govern surface coal mining and reclamation operations in 
accordance with the Act and consistent with the Federal regulations. 
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. Submission of the 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.
    We announced receipt of the proposed amendment in the February 8, 
2016, Federal Register (81 FR 6477). 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 March 9, 2016. We did not receive any comments.

III. OSMRE's Findings

    We are approving the amendment as described below. The following 
are the findings we made concerning Oklahoma's amendment under SMCRA 
and the Federal regulations at 30 CFR 732.15 and 732.17. Any revisions 
that we do not specifically discuss below concerning non-substantive 
wording or editorial changes can be found in the full text of the 
program amendment available at www.regulations.gov.

1. Subchapter 15. Requirements for Permits and Permit Processing

    Oklahoma removed paragraphs 460:20-15-6.7(a)(2)(A) and (B) 
regarding permit eligibility and unabated violations at remining sites 
issued before September 30, 2004, and added language to paragraph 
(a)(2) to substantively match the Federal requirements of 30 CFR 
773.13(a)(2).
    Oklahoma modified section 460:20-15-10.1(c) regarding the 
suspension and rescission appeal process so that it substantively 
matches the counterpart Federal regulations at 30 CFR 773.23(c). 
Additionally, Oklahoma modified 460:20-15-10.1(d) and added paragraph 
(e) to substantively match the requirements of 30 CFR 773.23 (d).
    We find that Oklahoma's changes to this subchapter substantively 
match the counterpart Federal requirements and do not make its rules or 
regulations less effective than the Federal requirements. Therefore, we 
are approving Oklahoma's revisions.

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

    Oklahoma added the requirement for GPS coordinates for each 
building on permit application maps in section 460:20-29-10(4). 
Although there is no

[[Page 58560]]

direct counterpart Federal regulation requiring this, the addition does 
not make Oklahoma's regulations less effective than the Federal 
requirements for general map requirements at 30 CFR 783.24.
    Oklahoma added the permitting requirement to list the depth to 
mined coal in section 460:20-29-11(a)(5). Although there is no direct 
counterpart Federal regulation requiring this, the addition does not 
make Oklahoma's regulations less effective than the Federal 
requirements for map cross sections, maps, and plans at 30 CFR 783.25.
    We find that Oklahoma's changes to this subchapter, although not 
specifically required by the counterpart Federal regulations, do not 
make its regulations less effective than the Federal requirements. 
Therefore, we are approving Oklahoma's revisions.

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

    Oklahoma added paragraph 460:20-43-7(a)(1) requiring that topsoil 
be removed a minimum of 60 feet or one pit width, whichever is less, in 
advance of the active pit. Although there is no specific requirement in 
the counterpart Federal regulations at 30 CFR 816.22, this addition 
does not make Oklahoma's regulations less effective than the Federal 
requirements.
    Oklahoma added new language to section 460:20-43-23 regarding 
blasting records. Oklahoma added the requirement that operators 
maintain the names of blasting crew members, expiration date of 
blaster's certification, a digital video of each blast, and drill logs. 
Although there is no specific requirement regarding this in the 
counterpart Federal regulations at 30 CFR 816.68, these additions do 
not make Oklahoma's regulations less effective than the Federal 
requirements.
    Oklahoma added new language regarding annual reporting requirements 
for contemporaneous reclamation in section 460:20-43-37(2). Although 
there is no specific requirement regarding this in the counterpart 
Federal regulations, these additions do not make Oklahoma's regulations 
less effective than the Federal requirements.
    Oklahoma added new language regarding qualification standards for 
temporary cessation of operations in section 460:20-43-49(a) and (c). 
For a site to qualify for temporary cessation, Oklahoma will now 
require that minable coal be available under a valid lease and it must 
be located within or adjacent to the current permit area. Additionally, 
other requirements have been added if temporary cessation exceeds 
twelve months. Although there are no specific requirements regarding 
this in the counterpart Federal regulations at 30 CFR 816.131, these 
additions do not make Oklahoma's regulations less effective than the 
Federal requirements.
    We find that Oklahoma's changes to this subchapter, although not 
specifically required, do not make its rules or regulations less 
effective than the Federal requirements. Therefore, we are approving 
Oklahoma's revisions.

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

    Oklahoma added paragraph 460:20-45-5(c) regarding casing and 
sealing underground openings during temporary cessation of operations. 
The language added is similar to that contained in the counterpart 
Federal regulation at 817.15. This addition does not make Oklahoma's 
regulations less effective than the Federal requirements.
    Oklahoma added language regarding right of entry information in 
section 460:20-45-17(b). The new language requires proof that the 
applicant has legal rights to enter and begin underground coal mining 
and reclamation operations. Although there is no specific counterpart 
Federal requirement for underground mining permit applications, the 
language added is similar to the requirements for surface mining permit 
applications found in 30 CFR 778.15. This addition does not make 
Oklahoma's regulations less effective than the Federal requirements.
    We find that Oklahoma's changes do not make its rules or 
regulations less effective than the Federal requirements. Therefore, we 
are approving Oklahoma's revision.

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

    Oklahoma added new paragraph 460:20-47-4(d) requiring surface 
drainage to be directed away from highwalls during augering operations. 
There is no direct Federal counterpart to this requirement within 30 
CFR 819. This addition does not make Oklahoma's regulations less 
effective than the Federal requirements.
    We find that Oklahoma's changes do not make its rules or 
regulations less effective than the Federal requirements. Therefore, we 
are approving Oklahoma's revision.

IV. Summary and Disposition of Comments

Public Comments

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

Federal Agency Comments

    On October 15, 2015, 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 Oklahoma 
program (Administrative Record No. OK-1003.01). 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 Oklahoma proposed to 
make in this amendment pertain to air or water quality standards. 
Therefore, we did not ask EPA to concur on the amendment. However, on 
October 15, 2015, under 30 CFR 732.17(h)(11)(i), we requested comments 
from the EPA on the amendment (Administrative Record No. OK-1003.01). 
The EPA did not respond to our request.

State Historical 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 October 15, 2015, we requested comments on the amendment 
(Administrative Record No. OK-1003.01). We did not receive any 
comments.

V. OSMRE's Decision

    Based on the above findings, we approve the amendment Oklahoma sent 
us on September 25, 2015 (Administrative Record No. OK-1003).
    To implement this decision, we are amending the Federal 
regulations, at 30 CFR part 936, that codify decisions concerning the 
Oklahoma program. In accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, 
this rule will take effect 30 days after the date of publication. 
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

[[Page 58561]]

purposes. SMCRA requires consistency of State and Federal standards.

VI. Procedural Determinations

Executive Order 12630--Takings

    This rulemaking 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

    Pursuant to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Guidance dated 
October 12, 1993, the approval of state program amendments is exempted 
from OMB review under Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 12988--Civil Justice Reform

    The Department of the Interior has reviewed this rule as required 
by section 3(a) of Executive Order 12988. The Department determined 
that this Federal Register notice meets the criteria of Section 3 of 
Executive Order 12988, which is intended to ensure that the agency 
review its legislation and proposed regulations to eliminate drafting 
errors and ambiguity; that the agency write its legislation and 
regulations to minimize litigation; and that the agency's legislation 
and regulations provide a clear legal standard for affected conduct 
rather than a general standard, and promote simplification and burden 
reduction. Because section 3 focuses on the quality of Federal 
legislation and regulations, the Department limited its review under 
this Executive Order to the quality of this Federal Register notice and 
to changes to the Federal regulations. The review under this Executive 
Order did not extend to the language of the State regulatory program or 
to the program amendment that the State of Oklahoma drafted.

Executive Order 13132--Federalism

    This rule is not a ``[p]olicy that [has] Federalism implications'' 
as defined by section 1(a) of Executive Order 13132 because it does not 
have ``substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship 
between the national government and the States, or on the distribution 
of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.'' 
Instead, this rule approves an amendment to the Oklahoma program 
submitted and drafted by that State. OSMRE reviewed the submission with 
fundamental federalism principles in mind as set forth in sections 2 
and 3 of the Executive Order and with the principles of cooperative 
federalism set forth in SMCRA. See, e.g., 30 U.S.C. 1201(f). As such, 
pursuant to section 503(a)(1) and (7) (30 U.S.C. 1253(a)(1) and (7)), 
OSMRE reviewed the program amendment to ensure that it is ``in 
accordance with'' the requirements of SMCRA and ``consistent with'' the 
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 rulemaking on Federally-recognized Indian 
tribes and have determined that the rulemaking 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. The basis for this determination is that 
our decision is on a State regulatory program and does not involve 
Federal regulations involving Indian lands.

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

    Executive Order 13211 of May 18, 2001, 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 rulemaking 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 rulemaking 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 rulemaking 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 rulemaking 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 rulemaking, 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 rulemaking 
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 rulemaking is not a major rulemaking under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), 
the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. This 
rulemaking: (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 rulemaking, 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 rulemaking 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 rulemaking, 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 936

    Intergovernmental relations, Surface mining, Underground mining.


[[Page 58562]]


    Dated: September 12, 2017.
Alfred L. Clayborne,
Regional Director, Mid-Continent Region.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 30 CFR part 936 is amended 
as set forth below:

PART 936--OKLAHOMA

0
1. The authority citation for part 936 continues to read as follows:

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


0
2. Section 936.15 is amended in the table by adding a new entry in 
chronological order by ``Date of final publication'' to read as 
follows:


Sec.  936.15  Approval of Oklahoma regulatory program amendments.

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   Original amendment submission date            Date of final publication              Citation/description
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
September 25, 2015......................  December 13, 2017......................  OAC 460:20-15-6.7(a)(2)(A)
                                                                                    and (B), 10.1(c), (d), and
                                                                                    (e); 20-29-10(4) and
                                                                                    11(a)(5); 20-43-7(a)(1), 23,
                                                                                    37(2), 49(a), and (c); 20-45-
                                                                                    5(c) and 17(b); and 20-47-
                                                                                    4(d).
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[FR Doc. 2017-26843 Filed 12-12-17; 8:45 a.m.]
BILLING CODE 4310-05-P