Department of Agriculture – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents
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As stipulated by the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is hereby giving notice that a meeting of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) will be held and will be open to the public by Internet access only.
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Forest Service is seeking comments from all interested individuals and organizations on the extension with revision of a currently approved information collection, Foreign Travel Proposal.
The Saguache Ranger District, Rio Grande National Forest (USFS), and San Luis Valley Field Office, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), propose to conduct restoration activities on up to 90,000 acres within the 187,778 acre La Gartia Hills (LGH) analysis area; approximately 145,709 acres are managed by the USFS and 33,294 acres are managed by the BLM. All activities would occur only on federal lands. The analysis area is located west and northwest of the town of La Garita in Saguache County, in south central Colorado. Treatment activities could include mechanical thinning, hand thinning, mastication, hazard tree removal, salvage, prescribed fire, tree planting, and relocation of selected road segments. The treatments will be used singularly or in combination to transition the landscape towards long-term desired future conditions that are more characteristic of a resilient forest, as described in the Rio Grande National Forest and San Luis Resource Area Management Plans. Resilient landscapes are more resistant to droughts, insect outbreaks, diseases, potential large wildfires, and will also offer additional protection to identified values at risk including: adjacent private land and property, water quality, watershed health, transportation systems, recreation sites, wildlife habitats, heritage sites, and timber resources. The USFS is the lead agency for the Environmental Impact Statement and the BLM is participating as a cooperating agency.
Notice of Decision To Authorize the Importation of Chipilin Leaves and Edible Flowers of Chufle, Izote, and Pacaya From Guatemala Into the Continental United States
We are advising the public of our decision to authorize the importation of chipilin leaves and edible flowers of chufle, izote, and pacaya from Guatemala into the continental United States. Based on the findings of pest risk analyses, which we made available to the public to review and comment through a previous notice, we have concluded that the application of one or more designated phytosanitary measures will be sufficient to mitigate the risks of introducing or disseminating plant pests or noxious weeds via the importation of chipilin leaves and edible flowers of chufle, izote, and pacaya from Guatemala.
We are proposing to amend the fruits and vegetables regulations to list kiwi (Actinidia deliciosa and Actinidia chinensis) from Chile as eligible for importation into the United States subject to a systems approach. Under this systems approach, the fruit would have to be grown in a place of production that is registered with the Government of Chile and certified as having a low prevalence of Brevipalpus chilensis. The fruit would have to undergo pre-harvest sampling at the registered production site. Following post-harvest processing, the fruit would have to be inspected in Chile at an approved inspection site. Each consignment of fruit would have to be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration stating that the fruit had been found free of Brevipalpus chilensis based on field and packinghouse inspections. This proposed rule would allow for the safe importation of kiwi from Chile using mitigation measures other than fumigation with methyl bromide.
The National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs play a critical role in ensuring that America's children have access to nutritious food. The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) subsidizes all school meals in participating schools in various ways including reimbursement for meals served based on the eligibility of the child receiving the meal. FNS reimburses schools at higher rates for those meals served to children eligible for free meals and reduced price meals. Schools are responsible for establishing paid meal prices for children who do not receive free or reduced price meals and whose meals are thus reimbursed by FNS at lower rates. If children do not have the required payment for meals on the day of service, schools may extend credit to the child for the meal. Generally, this process entails the school allowing the child to ``charge'' the meal with the understanding that the child will reimburse or pay back the school for the meal provided. Since credit policies are usually established at the school district level, they vary across the nation and within States and are not monitored by FNS. FNS considers access to healthy school meals including nutritious foods a critical function of the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs. Evidence shows that children who regularly eat healthy school meals perform better in the classroom and are less likely to be overweight. However, FNS also recognizes that allowing children to ``charge'' school meals can have financial impacts on individual schools and even school districts. This is especially true when meal charges are not subsequently paid, results in large unpaid meal charges and potential financial losses. Section 143 of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA) requires FNSin conjunction with States and participating local educational agencies (LEAs)to examine and report on the current policies and practices of State agencies and LEAs regarding extending credit to children by allowing them to ``charge'' the cost of school meals on the day of service. As required by the HHFKA, this examination must include the feasibility of establishing national standards for extending credit to children by allowing meal charges, establishing national charges for alternate meals which might be served, and providing recommendations for implementing those standards. At this time, FNS is seeking information from all affected parties regarding State and LEA current policies regarding extending credit to children by allowing them to ``charge'' the cost of school meals on the day of service. Specifically, FNS is interested in commenters providing details of policies and procedures in their State or LEA and the advantages and challenges associated with those procedures.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Notice of Emergency Approval of New Information Collection for Feasibility of Tribal Administration of Federal Nutrition Assistance Programs
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces FNS' intention to request emergency approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This is a new collection for the purpose of determining the interest among Indian Tribal Organizations (ITOs) in administering FNS programs, the capacity of ITOs to do so, and legislative and regulatory implications.
Request for Information: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Revision of the Program and Budget Summary Statement Part B-Program Activity Statement
Each year, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) State agencies are required to submit the Program and Budget Summary Statement Part B, Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B) to the Food Nutrition Service (FNS) per 7 CFR 272.2(c)(ii). Information collected on this form includes fraud activity for the reporting fiscal year such as a total number of fraud referrals, investigations, prosecutions, disqualification consent agreements (DCA), administrative disqualification hearings (ADH) and ADH waivers. This form further contains data on program dollars associated with pre-certification and post-certification fraud investigations, as well as program dollars that may be recovered resulting from an ADH or prosecution. This information is reported not later than 45 days after the end of the State agency's fiscal year, which is typically August 15th for most States. FNS is contemplating proposed changes to this form in order to improve the reliability and accuracy of State integrity reporting by revising data field definitions, such as what constitutes an investigation, for clarity and consistency. FNS is also considering an increase in the frequency of reporting and would be interested in better understanding what impact increasing the reporting frequency may have on stakeholders. Furthermore, FNS is considering the addition of new data elements in order to better understand the impact and value returned to the taxpayer as a result of fraud prevention activities. Through this notice, FNS announces a request for information regarding the impacts for consideration in revising the Program Activity Statement (FNS- 366B). FNS will consider all comments in the development of the new reporting form.
The Forest Service gives notice of its intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Johnson Bar Fire Salvage Project. The Proposed action would utilize ground based (tractor and skyline) and helicopter logging systems to harvest trees killed by the Johnson Bar Fire. Harvested areas would be replanted with early seral species such as ponderosa pine, western white pine and western larch. Approximately 3 miles of roads would be decommissioned to reduce sediment related impacts to the watershed. The EIS will analyze the effects of the proposed action and alternatives. The Nez Perce- Clearwater Forests invites comments and suggestions on the issues to be addressed. The agency gives notice of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analysis and decision making process on the proposal so interested and affected members of the public may participate and contribute to the final decision.
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Farm Service Agency and the Commodity Credit Corporation are requesting comments from all interested individuals and organizations on a revision of a currently approved information collection in support of the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP). The information collected is needed from producers to determine eligibility for NAP assistance.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Endangered Species Regulations and Forfeiture Procedures
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request a revision to and extension of approval of an information collection associated with the regulations for protection of endangered species of terrestrial plants and for procedures related to the forfeiture of plants or other property.
Notice of Request for Approval of an Information Collection; Lacey Act; Definitions for Exempt and Regulated Articles
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request approval of a new information collection required by the Lacey Act concerning definitions for exempt and regulated articles.
The Klamath National Forest will prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) on a proposal to reduce safety hazards to the public and forest workers, obtain the maximum economic commodity values from burned timber, and increase the likelihood and speed by which burned forested areas are regenerated on about 63,883 acres that burned with high severity in the Beaver Creek, Whites, and Happy Camp Complex fires in 2014. The project area includes 162,264 acres of National Forest System lands and 20,863 acres of private land. Treatments for the project will be limited to National Forest System lands. It is located on the west side of the Forest within the Beaver Creek, Horse Creek-Klamath River, Humbug Creek-Klamath River, Elk Creek, Indian Creek, Lower Scott River, Seiad Creek-Klamath River, Thompson Creek- Klamath River, Ukonom Creek-Klamath River, French Creek-Scott River, North Fork Salmon River, and South Fork Salmon River 5th field watersheds. The legal description of the project area is Township (T) 39 North (N) Range (R) 10 West (W), T39NR11W, T40NR8W, T40NR10W, T40NR11W, T41NR10W, T41NR11W, T43NR12W, T44NR11W, T44NR12W, T45NR10W, T45NR11W, T45NR12W, T46NR8W, T46NR9W, T46NR10W, T46NR11W, T46NR12W, T47NR8W, T47NR9W, and T47NR10W of the Humboldt Meridian and T14NR8 East (E), T15NR7E, T15NR8E, T16NR7E, T16NR8E of the Humboldt Meridian.
Opportunity for Designation in Casa Grande, AZ; Jamestown, ND; Lincoln, NE; Memphis, TN; and Sioux City, IA Areas; Request for Comments on the Official Agencies Servicing These Areas
The designations of the official agencies listed below will end on March 31, 2015. We are asking persons or governmental agencies interested in providing official services in the areas presently served by these agencies to submit an application for designation. In addition, we are asking for comments on the quality of services provided by the following designated agencies: Farwell Commodity Grain Services, Inc. (Farwell Southwest); Grain Inspection, Inc. (Jamestown); Lincoln Inspection Service, Inc. (Lincoln); Midsouth Grain Inspection Service (Midsouth); and Sioux City Inspection and Weighing Service Company (Sioux City).
Pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act, this constitutes notice of the upcoming meeting of the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) Grain Inspection Advisory Committee (Advisory Committee). The Advisory Committee meets annually to advise the GIPSA Administrator on the programs and services that GIPSA delivers under the U.S. Grain Standards Act. Recommendations by the Advisory Committee help GIPSA better meet the needs of its customers who operate in a dynamic and changing marketplace.
We are amending the regulations concerning the importation of fruits and vegetables to allow the importation of fresh bananas from the Philippines into Guam, Hawaii, and the Northern Mariana Islands. As a condition of entry, the bananas will have to be produced in accordance with a systems approach that includes requirements for importation of commercial consignments, monitoring of fruit flies to establish low-prevalence places of production, harvesting only of hard green bananas, and inspection for quarantine pests by the national plant protection organization of the Philippines. The bananas will also have to be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration stating that they were grown, packed, and inspected and found to be free of quarantine pests in accordance with the proposed requirements. This action will allow the importation of bananas from the Philippines into Guam, Hawaii, and the Northern Mariana Islands while continuing to protect against the introduction of plant pests.
We are adopting as a final rule, without change, an interim rule that amended the pine shoot beetle regulations by adding areas in the States of Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, New York, and Virginia and the States of Indiana and New Jersey in their entirety to the list of quarantined areas. The interim rule also updated the list of regulated articles. The interim rule was necessary to prevent the spread of pine shoot beetle, a pest of pine trees, into noninfested areas of the United States.
The USDA Forest Service Shawnee National Forest (Forest) intends to prepare an environmental impact statement to disclose the environmental consequences of an ecological restoration project. In the environmental impact statement, the USDA Forest Service will address the potential environmental effects of the restoration of an oak- hickory hardwood forest-type and the increase of wildlife habitat diversity through the removal or thinning of non-native pine trees and small shade-tolerant hardwood trees from about 3,200 acres, the application of prescribed fire on about 15,100 acres, treatment of invasive species, maintenance of barrens habitats, development of vernal ponds, and transportation system maintenance, construction, or reconstruction. The Cretaceous Hills Ecological Restoration Project (Hills Project) is located in the Bay Creek Ditch, Barren Creek and Sister Islands-Ohio River watersheds between the communities of Metropolis and Bay City, in southern Pope and eastern Massac Counties, Illinois. The 26,102 acres in the project areas include about 15,130 acres of National Forest System land and 10,972 acres of state and private land. All activities are proposed on National Forest System land.
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Forest Service is seeking comments from all interested individuals and organizations on the extension of a currently approved information collection, 36 CFR part 228, subpart ALocatable Minerals.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture in a cooperative partnership with the Softwood Lumber Board and the Binational Softwood Lumber Council is conducting a prize competition funding initiative to support the demonstration of tall wood buildings in the United States. The U.S. Tall Wood Building Prize Competition (the ``Competition'') is being conducted to showcase the architectural and commercial viability of advanced wood products in tall building construction in order to support employment opportunities in rural communities, maintain the health and resiliency of the Nation's forests, and advance sustainability in the built environment. Using wood obtained through sustainable forestry practices in green building applications promotes a healthy environment and a strong economy. The timber industry is an important job creator and supports hundreds of local communities, many of them rural. A recent life cycle analysis found that harvesting, transporting, manufacturing, and using wood in lumber and panel products in building yields fewer air emissionsincluding greenhouse gasesthan the resource extraction, manufacture, and use of other common building materials. There are barriers to being the first to adopt new building materials and systems, most notably the costs of analyzing novel design and engineering alternatives and verifying that these solutions comply with applicable code(s). The funds made available for the Competition will support costs associated with pioneering the use of advanced wood products and systems in tall buildings and open the door for more widespread adoption of the innovative materials. The objective of the Competition is to identify one or more proponents with existing viable projects and capable design and construction teams willing to convert their existing project from a traditionally constructed tall building to a design and construction approach using advanced wood building materials, new composite or hybrid wood methods, and/or existing proven alternative solution techniques. The Competition prize purse will be awarded to selected proponent(s) to cover the incremental costs of converting from traditional construction to wood construction. The selected proponent(s) will be the team demonstrating the best ability to utilize new scientific data, to develop technical expertise, and to use incremental funding to safely design, specify, and construct a building of a minimum of eighty feet (80') in height (not including a reinforced concrete podium) in the United States of America that can showcase the application, practicality, and sustainability of innovative wood based structural building solutions in tall building construction.
The Forest Service will prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to analyze the impacts of timber harvest and associated activities on approximately 3,800 acres of forestland and savannahs in the Beasley Pond Analysis Area. Based on public scoping, discussion with other federal agencies and initial issues analysis, the responsible official has determined that preparation of an EIS is appropriate for this project. The proposed project is an activity implementing a land management plan and is subject to the pre- decisional objection process at 36 CFR part 218 subparts A and B.
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) will conduct pilot projects of limited scope and duration to evaluate processes and techniques that may improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the Farm Loan Programs (FLP) real estate loans (also referred to as ``farm ownership loans''), operating loans, emergency loans, and administrative provisions, as required by the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the 2014 Farm Bill). This notice provides an opportunity for the public to provide comments for FSA to consider for pilot projects. FSA expects to conduct at least two to three pilot projects.
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is amending the Farm Loan Programs (FLP) regulations for loan making and servicing on eligibility conditions for certain legal entities, allowing additional flexibility for loan applicants to meet the required farming experience, and increasing the maximum total indebtedness on Microloans (ML) to $50,000. The changes implement provisions of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill). The changes will help increase the number of entities eligible to participate in certain FLP loans and adjust to better reflect the changes in the way farms are owned and operated by legal entities. The changes will allow FSA to extend credit and servicing to family farm operations that may have been ineligible under existing regulations.
Notice of Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection for the Dairy Product Mandatory Reporting Program
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), this notice announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intention to request an extension and revision of a currently approved information collection under the Dairy Product Mandatory Reporting Program. The information collected supports the marketing of dairy products and is used to verify compliance with Federal milk marketing regulations.
Meeting Notice of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App 2, Section 1408 of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (7 U.S.C. 3123), and the Agricultural Act of 2014, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announces an open meeting of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics (NAREEE) Advisory Board.
The National Urban and Community Forestry Advisory Council (Council) will meet on November 5 and 7, 2014. The Council is authorized under Section 9 of the Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act, as amended by Title XII, Section 1219 of Public Law 101-624 (the Act) (16 U.S.C. 2105g) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972 (5 U.S.C. App. II). The purpose of the Committee is to: (a) Develop a national urban and community forestry action plan in accordance with Section 9(g)(3)(A-F) of the Act; (b) evaluate the implementation of that plan; and (c) develop criteria for, and submit reccomendations with respect to the urban and community forestry challenge cost-share program as required by Section 9(f)(1-2) of the Act. The meeting is open to the public. Additional information concerning the Council, can be found by visiting the Council's Web site at: http://www.fs.fed.us/ucf/ nucfac.shtml.
Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection, Comment Request: Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices Study
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This collection is a revision of the currently approved WIC Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices 2 Study (ITFPS-2). The revision is to amend the 24-month data collection instrument and extend the data collection on the cohort of infants by one year, to their 3rd birthday. The data will be used to estimate the type and prevalence of various feeding practices in the WIC population and assess whether the new WIC food packages (instituted in 2009) have influenced feeding practices. This study will also examine the circumstances and influences that shape mothers' feeding decisions for their children, and will describe the impact of these decisions throughout early child development.
Irish Potatoes Grown in Colorado and Imported Irish Potatoes; Relaxation of the Handling Regulation for Area No. 2 and Import Regulations
This proposed rule invites comments on a revision to the minimum quantity exception for potatoes handled under the Colorado potato marketing order, Area No. 2 (order). The order regulates the handling of Irish potatoes grown in Colorado and is administered locally by the Colorado Potato Administrative Committee, Area No. 2 (Committee). This action would increase the quantity of potatoes that may be handled under the order without regard to the order's handling regulation requirements from 1,000 to 2,000 pounds. The change in the import regulation is required under section 8e of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937. This action would allow the importation which, in the aggregate, does not exceed 2,000 pounds for all other round type potatoes, except red skinned, round type or long type potatoes that continue to remain at a 500 pound limit, to be imported without regard to the import regulations. This action is expected to benefit producers, handlers, and importers.
The Forest Service will prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to disclose the environmental effects of commercial and non-commercial vegetation management activities, prescribed burning, watershed and recreation improvement activities, and granting road access to private timber lands. Access management changes and other design features are included to protect resources and facilitate management activities. The project is located in the Lower Yaak, O'Brien, and Sheep planning subunits on the Three Rivers Ranger District, Kootenai National Forest, Lincoln County, Montana, near Troy, Montana.
On September 25, 2014, Rural Development published a notice concerning the 2014 Farm Bill Implementation Listening SessionRural Community College Coordinated Strategy. The phone number for the conference was incorrectly stated in one location.
Solicitation of Input From Stakeholders Regarding Commodity Boards To Propose Projects and Contribute Funding Under the Agricultural and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant Programs, Implementation
As part of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture's (NIFA) strategy to successfully implement Section 7404 of Public Law 113-79, the Agricultural Act of 2014, NIFA is soliciting stakeholder input on how it will establish procedures, including timelines, under which an entity established under a commodity promotion law (as such term is defined under section 7401(a) of the Agricultural Act of 2014) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State entity) may submit proposals for Requests for Applications (RFA)to be competed as part of the Agricultural and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) competitive grant programs. If proposals are accepted for funding, the proposed RFA will be competed as part of the AFRI competitive grants program RFAs and entities eligible for AFRI awards will be able to compete for award. In addition, as a condition of funding the grant proposed by a commodity board, NIFA shall require a contribution of funds equal to the amount of the grant. NIFA will be holding Web-based listening sessions in order to solicit stakeholder input on this new challenge area. The focus of the Web-based listening sessions will be to gather stakeholder input that will be used in developing a process for soliciting, evaluating, and prioritizing AFRI Request for Applications (RFA) submissions from the previously stated commodity board entities or their equivalent. All comments must be received by close of business on October 16, 2014, to be considered in the initial planning of the FY 2015 cycle.
Oranges, Grapefruit, Tangerines, and Tangelos Grown in Florida; Relaxing Grade Requirements on Valencia and Other Late Type Oranges
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting, as a final rule, without change, an interim rule that changed the minimum grade requirements prescribed under the marketing order for oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and tangelos grown in Florida (order). The interim rule reduced the minimum grade requirement for Valencia and other late type oranges shipped to interstate markets from a U.S. No. 1 to a U.S. No. 1 Golden from May 15 through June 14 each season and to a U.S. No.2 external/U.S. No. 1 internal from June 15 through August 31 each season. This rule provides additional Valencia and other late type oranges for late season markets, helping to maximize fresh shipments.
The Land Between the Lakes Advisory Board (Board) will meet in Golden Pond, Kentucky. The Board is established consistent with the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972 (5 U.S.C. App 2). Additional information concerning the Board, including the meeting summary/ minutes, can be found by visiting the Board's Web site at: http://www.lbl.org/ LRMPadvisoryboard.html.
Monsanto Co.; Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Determination of Nonregulated Status of Herbicide Resistant Soybeans and Cotton; Comment Period
The comment period for a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) on environmental impacts that may result from the potential approval of petitions seeking a determination of nonregulated status of cultivars of dicamba herbicide resistant soybeans and cotton produced by the Monsanto Company will remain open until October 10, 2014. This action will allow interested persons additional time to prepare and submit comments.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Waivers Under Section 6(o) of the Food and Nutrition Act
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on the proposed information collection. This is a revision of a currently approved collection. The purpose of Section 6(o) of the Food and Nutrition Act is to establish a time limit for the receipt of benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for certain able-bodied adults who are not working. The provision authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture, upon a State agency's request, to waive the provision for any group of individuals if the Secretary determines ``that the area in which the individuals reside has an unemployment rate of over 10 percent, or does not have a sufficient number of jobs to provide employment for the individuals.'' As required in the statute, in order to receive a waiver the State agency must submit sufficient supporting information so that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) can make the required determination as to the area's unemployment rate or sufficiency of available jobs. This collection of information is, therefore, necessary in order to obtain waivers of the SNAP time limit.
National Organic Program (NOP); Amendments to the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (Crops and Processing)
This final rule amends the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List) to reflect a recommendation submitted to the Secretary of Agriculture (Secretary) by the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) on October 18, 2012, and removes two previously expired substances. Consistent with the recommendation from the NOSB, this final rule adds biodegradable biobased mulch film to the National List with restrictive annotations. This action also adds a new definition for biodegradable biobased mulch film. This rule also removes two listings for nonorganic agricultural substances from the National List, hops (Humulus lupulus) and unmodified rice starch, as their use exemptions expired on January 1, 2013, and June 21, 2009, respectively. Two other substances that were recommended by the NOSB to the Secretary for addition to the National List, Citrus hystrix, leaves and fruit, and curry leaves (Murraya koenigii), have not been added to the National List based on comments received on the proposed rule.
This Notice announces the timeframes to submit applications for participation in the Advanced Biofuels Payment Program. The Advanced Biofuels Payment Program funds were provided through the Agricultural Act of 2014, Public Law 113-79, on February 7, 2014, (2014 Farm Bill). Under the Advanced Biofuel Payment Program, payments are made to advanced biofuel producers for the production of eligible advanced biofuels.
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Farm Service Agency (FSA) is requesting comments from all interested individuals and organizations on an extension with a revision of a currently approved information collection process associated with the regulations, licensing, and electronic provider agreements issued as specified in the United States Warehouse Act (USWA).
We are giving notice that the Secretary of Agriculture has renewed the charter of the General Conference Committee of the National Poultry Improvement Plan (Committee) for a 2-year period. The Secretary of Agriculture has determined that the Committee is necessary and in the public interest.
Nominations Open for the Vacancies on the National Advisory Council on Maternal, Infant and Fetal Nutrition
FNS is seeking nominations for 9 vacancies on the National Advisory Council on Maternal, Infant and Fetal Nutrition (Council). The Council is composed of 24 members. Members of the Council from outside USDA and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are appointed for 3-year terms. State and local officials may serve only during their official tenure. Parent participants are appointed for 2- year terms. Members appointed from USDA and HHS serve at the pleasure of their respective Secretaries. The Council studies the operation of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), and related programs such as the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP). Categories of membership are specified by law. To assure a balance of differing views, Council members are drawn from Federal, State and local governments, industry and organizations with a common interest in the management of WIC and CSFP, including parent participants in both programs. The vacant positions include:
This rule implements the new Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) Programs authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the 2014 Farm Bill). It also includes conforming changes to certain Farm Service Agency (FSA) regulations that apply to multiple programs. ARC and PLC provide producers a choice between a program that provides counter-cyclical type of payment supportPLC, and a revenue support type of programARC. During a defined election period, current producers can elect different programs for different covered commodities on a farm, for example, choosing PLC for corn and ARC county option for soybeans on the same farm. ARC offers the additional choice of a revenue guarantee based on average revenue for a county or on actual historical revenue for an individual farm. If a producer elects ARC individual coverage based on historical revenue for that specific farm, however, all the farm's covered commodities are elected with that option, with no option for PLC on that farm. This rule specifies the eligibility requirements, enrollment procedures, and payment calculations for ARC and PLC.
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) seeks comments on the intent of the U.S. National Arboretum (USNA) to renew an information collection that expires February 28, 2015. The information collection serves as a means to collect for certain use of the facilities, grounds, programs and services. This includes fees for educational programs and workshops and for use of the grounds and facilities, as well as for commercial photography and cinematography. Fees generated will be used to defray USNA expenses or to promote the missions of the USNA.
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intention of the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) to seek approval to conduct a new information collection, the Organic Certifiers Survey. This will be a voluntary survey that will be conducted annually.
As part of the implementation of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (commonly referred to as the 2014 Farm Bill), USDA Rural Development is hosting a listening session to receive public input about ways USDA can help community colleges form partnerships and get funding for local economic development. The 2014 Farm Bill directs USDA to work with community and technical colleges on a strategy to help them better serve the needs of local rural communities. The listening session will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to voice their comments, concerns or requests regarding this strategy. Instructions to register for and attend the listening session are in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.