[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 186 (Wednesday, September 25, 2019)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 50333]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-20936]

[[Page 50333]]



Fish and Wildlife Service


National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

50 CFR Part 402

[Docket No. FWS-HQ-ES-2018-0009; FXES11140900000-189-FF09E300000; 
Docket No. 180207140-8140-01; 4500090023]
RIN 1018-BC87; 0648-BH41

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Regulations for 
Interagency Cooperation

AGENCY: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior; National Marine 
Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 

ACTION: Final rule; delay of effective date.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National 
Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) (collectively referred to as the 
``Services'' or ``we''), are delaying the effective date of a rule we 
published on August 27, 2019.

DATES: The effective date of the rule that published at 84 FR 44976, 
August 27, 2019, is delayed until October 28, 2019.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gary Frazer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Department of the Interior, Washington, DC 20240, telephone 
202/208-4646; or Samuel D. Rauch, III, National Marine Fisheries 
Service, Department of Commerce, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, 
MD 20910, telephone 301/427-8000. If you use a telecommunications 
device for the deaf (TDD), call the Federal Relay Service at 800/877-

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On August 27, 2019, we published a final 
rule to revise portions of our regulations that implement section 7 of 
the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (``Act''; 16 U.S.C. 1531 
et seq.). The revisions to the regulations clarify, interpret, and 
implement portions of the Act concerning the interagency cooperation 
procedures. The rule was to be effective on September 26, 2019.
    Since the announcement of the final rule, we have conducted 
numerous informational webinars, meetings, and briefings for internal 
staff and external audiences, including hundreds of State, Federal, 
industry, and other conservation partners. During the course of these 
presentations, we have received many questions regarding implementation 
of the final rule. Additional time is needed to adequately educate and 
train staff of the Services and all of the affected Federal agencies on 
these interagency implementing regulations, which set forth 
requirements for both the Services and Federal action agencies. We are, 
therefore, delaying the effective date of the rule published on August 
27, 2019, at 84 FR 44976 (see DATES, above) to ensure a smooth 
transition and allow for additional coordination and training prior to 
the final rule becoming effective.

Administrative Procedure Act

    To the extent that 5 U.S.C. 553 applies to this action, it is 
exempt from notice and comment because it constitutes a rule of 
procedure under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A). Alternatively, our implementation 
of this action without opportunity for public comment, effective 
immediately upon publication in the Federal Register, is based on the 
good cause exceptions in 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and 553(d)(3). Pursuant to 
5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), we have determined that good cause exists to forgo 
the requirement to provide prior notice and an opportunity for public 
comment thereon for this rule as such procedures would be 
impracticable, unnecessary, and contrary to the public interest. We are 
temporarily postponing the effective date of the rule (see DATES, 
above) to allow for additional time to coordinate with our internal 
staff and external partners. As a result, seeking public comment on 
this delay is unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. For 
these same reasons, we find good cause to waive the 30-day delay in 
effective date provided for in 5 U.S.C. 553(d).

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1361-1407; 1531-1544; and 4201-4245, unless 
otherwise noted.

    Dated: September 20, 2019.
Rob Wallace,
Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks, Department of the 
    Dated: September 20, 2019.
Neil Jacobs,
Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and 
Prediction, performing the duties of Under Secretary of Commerce for 
Oceans and Atmosphere, Department of Commerce.
[FR Doc. 2019-20936 Filed 9-24-19; 8:45 am]