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Federal Register Highlights – 2/5/15

February 5, 2015

Unpublished, time-sensitive and proposed rules for February 5, 2015:

TEMPORARY RULE: The Coast Guard is establishing an interim rule providing for temporary moving security zones around vessels being escorted by one or more Coast Guard or other Federal, State, or local law enforcement assets, on the navigable waters of the Lower Mississippi River, New Orleans, LA. These temporary moving security zones are necessary for the safe transit and mooring of vessels requiring escort protection by the Coast Guard for security reasons as well as the safety and security of personnel and port facilities. Entry into, remaining in or transiting through these zones is prohibited for all vessels, mariners, and persons unless specifically authorized by the Captain of the Port New Orleans or a designated representative. The Coast Guard seeks comments on this interim rule before establishing a permanent final rule. This rule is effective in the CFR on February 5, 2015 through July 1, 2015. This rule is effective with actual notice for purposes of enforcement on January 31,  2015. This rule will remain in effective through July 1, 2015.

PROPOSED RULE: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to amend the EPA’s regulatory definition of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) under the Clean Air Act (CAA). The regulatory definition of VOCs currently excludes tbutyl acetate (also known as tertiary butyl acetate or TBAC; CAS NO: 540–88–5) for purposes of VOC emissions limitations or VOC content requirements on the basis that it makes a negligible contribution to tropospheric ozone formation. However, the current definition includes TBAC as a VOC for purposes of all recordkeeping, emissions reporting, photochemical dispersion modeling and inventory requirements which apply to VOCs. The regulatory definition requires that TBAC be uniquely identified in emission reports. TBAC is used as a solvent in paints, inks and adhesives, in which it substitutes for compounds that are regulated as VOCs. This proposed action would remove recordkeeping, emissions reporting, photochemical dispersion modeling and inventory requirements related to the use of TBAC as a VOC. The EPA has concluded that these requirements are not resulting in useful information. Furthermore, there is no evidence that TBAC is being used at levels that would cause concern for ozone formation. As these requirements are unnecessary and can be burdensome for states and industry, we are proposing to revoke these requirements and exclude TBAC from the regulatory definition of VOCs for all purposes. Note that the EPA is not reconsidering its determination that TBAC is “negligibly reactive” with respect to ground-level ozone formation. Comments must be received on or before April 6, 2015. (To submit comments, visit http://www.regulations.gov. Click here to be taken directly to the commenting page.)

PROPOSED RULE: This proposed rule would amend HUD’s Section 108 Loan Guarantee Program (Section 108 Program) regulations to permit HUD, in accordance with statutory authority, to collect fees from Section 108 borrowers to offset the costs of Section 108 loan guarantees. HUD is proposing this rule to ensure that it can begin to make Section 108 loan guarantee commitments without appropriated subsidy. The Department of Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Act, 2014, authorizes HUD to collect fees from borrowers for this program. In anticipation of further appropriations acts authorizing the collection of fees for Section 108 loan guarantees, HUD proposes to add a new section to its current regulations to reflect that when appropriations for credit subsidy costs as authorized by Congress are either not available or insufficient and HUD has statutory authority to collect fees, HUD will impose a fee on Section 108 Program borrowers and explain the basis for the fee imposed. The proposed new regulatory section would provide for HUD to set the fee by notice. Elsewhere in today’s Federal Register, HUD is publishing the notice that would propose the fee to be established for the fiscal year 2015, subject to statutory authorization. Comment Due Date: March 9, 2015. (To submit comments, visit http://www.regulations.gov. Click here to be taken directly to the commenting page.)

TEMPORARY RULE: NMFS implements an accountability measure (AM) to close the hook-and-line component of the commercial sector for king mackerel in the Florida west coast southern subzone. This closure is necessary to protect the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) king mackerel resource. This rule is effective 12:01 a.m., local time, February 5, 2015, through June 30, 2015.

PROPOSED RULE: In January 2015, the Postal Service™ filed a notice of mailing services price adjustments with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC), effective April 26, 2015. This proposed rule contains the revisions to Mailing Standards of the United States Postal Service, Domestic Mail Manual (DMM®) that we would adopt to implement the changes coincident with the price adjustments. We must receive comments on or before March 9, 2015. (Mail or deliver written comments to the manager, Product Classification, U.S. Postal Service®, 475 L’Enfant Plaza SW., Room 4446, Washington DC 20260–5015.)

PROPOSED RULE: The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA or Agency) is proposing to amend its regulations to implement provisions of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 and the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013. Based on authorities provided in these two statutes, the proposed rule would establish a Government-wide mentor-protégé program for all small business concerns, consistent with SBA’s mentor-protégé program for Participants in SBA’s 8(a) Business Development (BD) program. The proposed rule would also make minor changes to the mentor-protégé provisions for the 8(a) Business Development program in order to make the mentor-protégé rules for each of the programs as consistent as possible. The proposed rule would amend the current joint venture provisions to clarify the conditions for creating and operating joint venture partnerships, including the effect of such partnerships on any mentor-protégé relationships. Finally, the proposed rule would make several additional changes to current size, 8(a) Office of Hearings and Appeals or HUBZone regulations, concerning among other things, ownership and control, changes in primary industry, standards of review and interested party status for some appeals. Comments must be received on or before April 6, 2015. (To submit comments, visit http://www.regulations.gov. Click here to be taken directly to the commenting page.)

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