Special Regulations; Areas of the National Park System, Yellowstone National Park, 53826-53829 [2012-21828]

Download as PDF 53826 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 171 / Tuesday, September 4, 2012 / Proposed Rules Desk Officer for U.S. Department of Education. Send these comments by email to OIRA_DOCKET@omb.eop.gov or by fax to (202) 395–6974. You may also send a copy of these comments to the Department contact named in the sroberts on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this notice. In preparing your comments you may want to review the ICR, which we maintain in the Education Department Information Collection System (EDICS) at http://edicsweb.ed.gov. Click on Browse Pending Collections. This proposed collection is identified as proposed collection (04833) 1855-New. This ICR is also available on OMB’s RegInfo Web site at www.reginfo.gov. We consider your comments on this proposed collection of information in— • Deciding whether the proposed collection is necessary for the proper performance of our functions, including whether the information will have practical use; • Evaluating the accuracy of our estimate of the burden of the proposed collection, including the validity of our methodology and assumptions; • Enhancing the quality, usefulness, and clarity of the information we collect; and • Minimizing the burden on those who must respond. This includes exploring the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques. OMB is required to make a decision concerning the collection of information contained in these proposed priorities, requirements, and selection criteria between 30 and 60 days after publication of this document in the Federal Register. Therefore, to ensure that OMB gives your comments full consideration, it is important that OMB receives your comments on the proposed collection within 30 days after publication. This does not affect the deadline for your comments to us on the proposed priorities, requirements, definitions, and selection criteria. Please note that a Federal agency cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless OMB approves the collection under the PRA and the corresponding information collection instrument displays a currently valid OMB control number. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to comply with, or is subject to penalty for failure to comply with, a collection of information if the collection instrument does not display a currently valid OMB control number. We will provide the OMB control number when we publish the notice of VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:15 Aug 31, 2012 Jkt 226001 final priorities, requirements, definitions, and selection criteria. Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR Part 79. One of the objectives of the Executive Order is to foster an intergovernmental partnership and a strengthened federalism. The Executive Order relies on processes developed by State and local governments for coordination and review of proposed Federal financial assistance. This document provides early notification of our specific plans and actions for this program. Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) on request to the program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System at: www.gpo.gov/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site. You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at: www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department. Dated: August 30, 2012. James H. Shelton, III, Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement. [FR Doc. 2012–21814 Filed 8–31–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS–YELL–10569; 2310–0070–422] 36 CFR Part 7 RIN 1024–AE10 Special Regulations; Areas of the National Park System, Yellowstone National Park National Park Service, Interior. Proposed rule. AGENCY: ACTION: PO 00000 Frm 00048 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 This rule would implement an amended Record of Decision for the 2011 Winter Use Plan/Environmental Impact Statement and would govern winter visitation and certain recreational activities in Yellowstone National Park for the 2012–2013 winter season. The rule proposes to retain, for one additional year, the regulation and management framework that have been in place for the past three winter seasons (2009–2010, 2010–2011 and 2011–2012). Specifically, the rule would retain provisions that require most recreational snowmobiles operating in the park to meet certain National Park Service air and sound emissions requirements; require snowmobiles and snowcoaches in Yellowstone to be accompanied by a commercial guide; set daily entry limits on the numbers of snowmobiles (up to 318) and snowcoaches (up to 78) that may enter the park; and prohibit traveling off designated oversnow routes. DATES: Comments must be received by October 4, 2012. ADDRESSES: You may submit your comments, identified by Regulation Identifier Number (RIN) 1024–AE10, by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Mail: Yellowstone National Park, Winter Use Proposed Rule, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190. • Hand Deliver to: Management Assistant’s Office, Headquarters Building, Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. All submissions received must include the agency name and RIN. For additional information see ‘‘Public Participation’’ under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION below. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Wade Vagias, Management Assistant’s Office, Headquarters Building, Yellowstone National Park, 307–344– 2035 or at the address listed in the ADDRESSES section. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Background The National Park Service (NPS) has managed winter use in Yellowstone National Park for several decades. A detailed history of the winter use issue, past planning efforts, and litigation is provided on the park’s Web site, http:// www.nps.gov/yell/parkmgmt/ timeline.htm. The park has most recently operated under a temporary one-year rule (76 FR 77131). That rule, which expired by its own terms on March 15, 2012, had extended for one E:\FR\FM\04SEP1.SGM 04SEP1 sroberts on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 171 / Tuesday, September 4, 2012 / Proposed Rules winter season the daily entry limits and operational requirements for snowmobiles and snowcoaches adopted by the 2009 interim plan, which had been in effect for the prior two winter seasons. On July 5, 2011, the NPS published a proposed long-term rule to implement the preferred alternative identified in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) (76 FR 39048). Under that alternative, the NPS proposed providing four different use-level combinations for snowmobiles and snowcoaches, which would vary according to a seasonal schedule. The NPS had intended to issue a record of decision and finalize a long-term rule for Yellowstone winter use by December 2011. However, some of the more than 59,000 public comments received on the DEIS raised reasonable questions as to long-term management strategies and environmental impacts, and the NPS decided to delay implementation of a long-term rule in order to prepare a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) further analyzing the impacts of winter use under various long-term management options. Accordingly, in its December 2011 Record of Decision (ROD) (76 FR 77249), the NPS announced its decision to select and implement Alternative 8 in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS). Alternative 8 extended for one additional winter season—the 2011–2012 season—the daily entry limits and operating requirements of the 2009 rule, which allowed up to 318 commercially guided, best available technology snowmobiles and 78 commercially guided snowcoaches in the park per day, as well as authorizing a variety of nonmotorized uses. The DEIS and FEIS contained and analyzed an alternative— identified as Alternative 2— implementing those limits and operating requirements indefinitely into the future. On December 12, 2011, the NPS published a final rule to implement Alternative 8 (76 FR 77131). The NPS believed that the additional time afforded by a new one-season rule would allow it to complete the SEIS, decide on a long-term plan for managing winter use, and promulgate a new longterm rule before the beginning of the 2012–2013 winter season. On June 29, 2012, the NPS released the Draft SEIS and published a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register (77 FR 38824). Public comment on the Draft SEIS closed on August 20, 2012. The response from the public and stakeholders has been robust. A majority of the substantive comments have addressed the proposal in the Draft VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:15 Aug 31, 2012 Jkt 226001 SEIS’s preferred alternative to manage snowmobiles and snowcoaches by a new concept known as ‘‘transportation events.’’ Numerous commenters have requested additional time to consider this new management concept and to respond substantively to it. Accordingly, the NPS has decided to reopen public comment on the Draft SEIS for an additional 30 days. Mindful of the short amount of time left before the December 15, 2012, opening of the 2012–2013 winter season and desiring to take the time necessary to make a reasoned, sustainable long-term decision on winter use, the NPS has decided to amend the December 2011 ROD. Utilizing the analyses contained in Alternative 2 in the 2011 FEIS and updated information gathered during the 2011–2012 winter season, the NPS is promulgating this new rule to extend for one additional winter season the 2011–2012 daily entry limits and operating requirements. The purpose of this publication is to solicit public comment on the NPS’s decision to amend the December 2011 ROD and on the new proposed one-season rule. Section by Section Analysis The NPS is proposing to revise § 7.13 paragraphs (l)(3)(ii) and (l)(4)(vi) and the introductory text of paragraphs (l)(7)(i) and (l)(8)(i) by replacing the terms ‘‘the winter season of 2011–2012’’ and ‘‘the winter of 2011–2012’’ with the terms ‘‘the winter season of 2012–2013’’ and ‘‘the winter of 2012–2013.’’ This would be the only change to the existing regulations. Compliance With Other Laws and Executive Orders Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Orders 12866 and 13563) Executive Order 12866 provides that the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs will review all significant rules. The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs has determined that this rule is significant because it will raise novel legal or policy issues. Executive Order 13563 reaffirms the principles of E.O. 12866 while calling for improvements in the nation’s regulatory system to promote predictability, to reduce uncertainty, and to use the best, most innovative, and least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory ends. The executive order directs agencies to consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public where these approaches are relevant, feasible, and consistent with regulatory objectives. E.O. 13563 emphasizes PO 00000 Frm 00049 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 53827 further that regulations must be based on the best available science and that the rulemaking process must allow for public participation and an open exchange of ideas. We have developed this rule in a manner consistent with these requirements. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) This rule will not have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). The NPS used two separate baselines for its regulatory flexibility analysis. If no new rule were passed, Baseline 1 would be defined by the no-action alternative in the EIS. Under this baseline, no motorized oversnow vehicles would be allowed in the park. In addition, the NPS defined a second baseline, Baseline 2. Baseline 2 represents the continuation of the same levels of use allowed under the 2009 interim regulation in place for the past three winter seasons. Under Baseline 2, there would be a zero net change between the past three years and the actions being implemented under this rule, because the rule extends the management framework in place the past three winter seasons for one additional year. A regulatory flexibility analysis is included in the report titled ‘‘Economic Analysis of Winter Use Regulations in Yellowstone National Park’’ (RTI International, 2011). The NPS has reviewed the economic analysis contained in that report and has concluded that it still is relevant and that its results would apply to the additional year. Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the SBREFA. This rule: (a) Does not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more. (b) Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, state, or local government agencies, or geographic regions. (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 rule has no effect on methods of manufacturing or production and specifically affects the Greater Yellowstone Area, not national or U.S.based enterprises. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) This rule does not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or E:\FR\FM\04SEP1.SGM 04SEP1 53828 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 171 / Tuesday, September 4, 2012 / Proposed Rules tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per year. The rule does not have a significant or unique effect on State, local or tribal governments or the private sector. A statement containing the information required by the UMRA (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) is not required. The rule addresses public use of national park lands, and imposes no requirements on other agencies or governments. Takings (Executive Order 12630) Under the criteria in section 2 Executive Order 12630, this rule does not have significant takings implications. Access to private property located adjacent to the park will be afforded the same access during winter as before this rule. No other property is affected. A takings implication assessment is not required. Federalism (Executive Order 13132) Under the criteria in section 1 of Executive Order 13132, this rule does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a Federalism summary impact statement. It addresses public use of national park lands, and imposes no requirements on other agencies or governments. A Federalism summary impact statement is not required. sroberts on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Civil Justice Reform (Executive Order 12988) This rule complies with the requirements of Executive Order 12988. Specifically, this rule: (a) Meets the criteria of section 3(a) requiring that all regulations be reviewed to eliminate errors and ambiguity and be written to minimize litigation; and (b) Meets the criteria of section 3(b)(2) requiring that all regulations be written in clear language and contain clear legal standards. Consultation With Indian Tribes (Executive Order 13175 and Department Policy) The Department of the Interior strives to strengthen its government-togovernment relationship with Indian Tribes through a commitment to consultation with Indian Tribes and recognition of their right to selfgovernance and tribal sovereignty. We have evaluated this rule under the Department’s consultation policy and under the criteria in Executive Order 13175 and have determined that it has no substantial direct effects on federally recognized Indian tribes and that consultation under the Department’s tribal consultation policy is not required. Numerous tribes in the area VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:15 Aug 31, 2012 Jkt 226001 were consulted in the development of the previous winter use planning documents. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) This rule does not contain any new collection of information that requires approval by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the PRA of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). OMB has approved the collection requirement associated with Commercial Services and has assigned OMB control number 1024–0129 (expires 09/30/2013). An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) This winter use plan and rule constitute a major Federal action with the potential to significantly affect the quality of the human environment. The NPS prepared the 2011 Winter Use Plan/Environmental Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. The NPS is reexamining the analyses contained in the 2011 EIS, as well as new data from the 2011–2012 winter season, and intends to amend the December 2011 ROD (76 FR 77249) to authorize extending the current winter use management frame work for an additional year. The EIS is available for review at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/ yell. Effects on the Energy Supply (Executive Order 13211) This rule is not a significant energy action under the definition in Executive Order 13211, a statement of Energy Effects is not required. Clarity of This Regulation We are required by Executive Orders 12866 (section 1 (b)(12)), 12988 (section 3(b)(1)(B)), and 13563 (section 1(a)), and by the Presidential Memorandum of June 1, 1998, to write all rules in plain language. This means that each rule we publish must: (a) Be logically organized; (b) Use the active voice to address readers directly; (c) Use common, everyday words and clear language rather than jargon; (d) Be divided into short sections and sentences; and (e) Use lists and tables wherever possible. If you feel that we have not met these requirements, send us comments by one of the methods listed in the ADDRESSES section. To better help us revise the PO 00000 Frm 00050 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 rule, your comments should be as specific as possible. For example, you should tell us the numbers of the sections or paragraphs that you find unclear, which sections or sentences are too long, the sections where you feel lists or tables would be useful, etc. Public Availability of Comments Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. Length of the Comment Period This proposed rule is available for public review and comment for a period of 30 days. Under more typical circumstances the NPS would normally provide a 60-day comment period. In this case, new issues raised in the course of preparing the 2011 EIS necessitated the completion of a Supplemental EIS, resulting in the need for an expedited rulemaking process to authorize winter use during the upcoming winter season. For this regulation, we have determined that in order for a final rule to become effective by December 15, 2012, it is necessary to reduce the normal review and comment period to 30 days. Good cause exists for the shortened comment period for the following reasons: (1) The NPS has received voluminous public comment on previous rulemaking efforts regarding winter use of the park, including efforts in 2000, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008, and 2011. Those rulemaking efforts addressed many of the same issues as are addressed in this rulemaking, and a relatively small number of new issues are being raised. (2) Since at least December 2011 the NPS has in good faith publicly stated that the 2012–2013 winter season for Yellowstone would commence on or about December 15, 2012, and the public and businesses have made decisions based on the widespread public knowledge of this opening date. (3) Many persons planning to visit the park have already made travel plans in anticipation of the park being open for snowmobile and snowcoach use, such as reserving time off from work, booking airfares and hotel accommodations, making reservations for snowmobile or snowcoach tours, and the like. The Christmas-New Year period is one of the E:\FR\FM\04SEP1.SGM 04SEP1 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 171 / Tuesday, September 4, 2012 / Proposed Rules most heavily visited times of the winter season. If the park does not open as scheduled on December 15, 2012, it would create unnecessary hardship for visitors who have already planned trips, and would likely result in economic losses for some visitors if reservations had to be cancelled. Significant revenue loss for businesses in and around the park would also occur. Many businesses in the gateway communities surrounding the park, and the people who rely upon them for their livelihoods, are highly dependent upon the park being open for the entire duration of the approximately 90-day season. (4) Snowmobile and snowcoach operators have made business decisions and investments for the winter season premised on an opening date of December 15, 2012. Such actions include purchasing new snowmobiles and snowcoaches for their fleets, making offers of employment, preparing advertising and other materials, and purchasing snowmobile accessories such as suits, helmets, boots, mittens, etc. A late opening would shorten an already-brief winter season, thereby depriving these businesses and others that depend on the winter season (such as hotels, restaurants, service stations, and other hospitality-oriented businesses) of revenue that is important to their livelihoods. List of Subjects in 36 CFR Part 7 National Parks, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. In consideration of the forgoing, the NPS proposes to amend 36 CFR part 7 as set forth below: Registration of Copyright: Definition of Claimant Yellowstone National Park. sroberts on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Jkt 226001 Copyright Office, Library of Congress. ACTION: Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: Extension of Reply Comment Period. AGENCY: * * * * (l) * * * (3) * * * (ii) The authority to operate a snowmobile in Yellowstone National Park established in paragraph (l)(3)(i) of this section is in effect only through the winter season of 2012–2013. * * * * * (4) * * * The Copyright Office is extending the reply comment period on the proposed rule to amend its regulations governing the definition of a ‘‘claimant’’ for purposes of copyright registration by eliminating the footnote to the definition of a ‘‘claimant’’ in § 202.3(a)(3)(ii). SUMMARY: Reply comments must be received in the Copyright Office no later than 5:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) on October 4, 2012. ADDRESSES: The Copyright Office strongly prefers that comments be submitted electronically. A comment DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00051 Fmt 4702 page containing a comment form is posted on the Copyright Office Web site at http://www/copyright.gov/docs/ claimantfn. The online form contains fields for required information including the name and organization of the commenter, as applicable, and the ability to upload comments as an attachment. To meet accessibility standards, all comments must be uploaded in a single file in either the Adobe Portable Document File (PDF) format that contains searchable, accessible text (not an image); Microsoft Word; WordPerfect; Rich Text Format (RTF); or ASCII text file format (not a scanned document). The maximum file size is 6 megabytes (MB). The names of the submitter and, if applicable, the organization should appear on both the form and the face of the comments. All comments will be posted publicly on the Copyright Office Web site exactly as they are received, along with names and organizations. If electronic submission of comments is not feasible, please contact the Copyright Office at 202– 707–8380 for special instructions. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Kasunic, Deputy General Counsel, Copyright Office, GC/I&R, P.O. Box 70400, Washington, DC 20024. Telephone: (202) 707–8380. Fax: (202) 707–8366. On May 17, 2012, the Copyright Office published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comments on its proposal to amend the definition of a ‘‘claimant’’ by removing the footnote to the definition in § 202.3(a)(3)(ii). In response to this Notice, the Copyright Office received three comments that are posted on the Office’s Web site at: http:// www.copyright.gov/docs/claimantfn/ comments/index.html. At the conclusion of the comment period, the online comment submission form was removed from the Web site and was not replaced with a reply comment submission form during the established reply comment period. Although the Office is not aware of any attempts to submit a reply comment, the Copyright Office is extending the reply comment period in this rulemaking for an additional 30 days as a result of the error with the submission form, and invites replies to the initial comments submitted. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: [Docket No. 2012–3] 2. In § 7.13 revise paragraphs (l)(3)(ii), (l)(4)(vi), (l)(7)(i) introductory text, and (l)(8)(i) introductory text to read as follows: 16:15 Aug 31, 2012 BILLING CODE 4312–CT–P 37 CFR Part 202 Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1, 3, 9a, 462(k); Sec. 7.96 also issued under DC Code 10–137 (2001) and DC Code 50–2201 (2001). VerDate Mar<15>2010 [FR Doc. 2012–21828 Filed 8–31–12; 8:45 am] Copyright Office 1. The authority citation for part 7 continues to read as follows: * Dated: August 30, 2012. Michael Bean, Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks. LIBRARY OF CONGRESS PART 7—SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.13 (vi) The authority to operate a snowcoach in Yellowstone National Park established in paragraph (l)(4)(i) of this section is in effect only through the winter season of 2012–2013. * * * * * (7) * * * (i) You may operate your snowmobile only upon designated oversnow routes established within the park in accordance with § 2.18(c) of this chapter. The following oversnow routes are designated for snowmobile use through the winter of 2012–2013: * * * * * (8) * * * (i) Authorized snowcoaches may be operated on the routes designated for snowmobile use in paragraphs (l)(7)(i)(A) through (l)(7)(i)(O) of this section. The restricted hours of snowmobile use described in paragraphs (1)(7)(i)(M) through (1)(7)(i)(O) do not apply to snowcoaches. Snowcoaches may also be operated on the following additional oversnow routes through the winter of 2012–2013: * * * * * 53829 Sfmt 9990 Dated: August 29, 2012. David O. Carson, General Counsel. [FR Doc. 2012–21703 Filed 8–31–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 1410–30–P E:\FR\FM\04SEP1.SGM 04SEP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 171 (Tuesday, September 4, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 53826-53829]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-21828]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

National Park Service

[NPS-YELL-10569; 2310-0070-422]

36 CFR Part 7

RIN 1024-AE10


Special Regulations; Areas of the National Park System, 
Yellowstone National Park

AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: This rule would implement an amended Record of Decision for 
the 2011 Winter Use Plan/Environmental Impact Statement and would 
govern winter visitation and certain recreational activities in 
Yellowstone National Park for the 2012-2013 winter season. The rule 
proposes to retain, for one additional year, the regulation and 
management framework that have been in place for the past three winter 
seasons (2009-2010, 2010-2011 and 2011-2012). Specifically, the rule 
would retain provisions that require most recreational snowmobiles 
operating in the park to meet certain National Park Service air and 
sound emissions requirements; require snowmobiles and snowcoaches in 
Yellowstone to be accompanied by a commercial guide; set daily entry 
limits on the numbers of snowmobiles (up to 318) and snowcoaches (up to 
78) that may enter the park; and prohibit traveling off designated 
oversnow routes.

DATES: Comments must be received by October 4, 2012.

ADDRESSES: You may submit your comments, identified by Regulation 
Identifier Number (RIN) 1024-AE10, by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     Mail: Yellowstone National Park, Winter Use Proposed Rule, 
P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190.
     Hand Deliver to: Management Assistant's Office, 
Headquarters Building, Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park, 
Wyoming.
    All submissions received must include the agency name and RIN. For 
additional information see ``Public Participation'' under SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION below.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Wade Vagias, Management Assistant's 
Office, Headquarters Building, Yellowstone National Park, 307-344-2035 
or at the address listed in the ADDRESSES section.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The National Park Service (NPS) has managed winter use in 
Yellowstone National Park for several decades. A detailed history of 
the winter use issue, past planning efforts, and litigation is provided 
on the park's Web site, http://www.nps.gov/yell/parkmgmt/timeline.htm. 
The park has most recently operated under a temporary one-year rule (76 
FR 77131). That rule, which expired by its own terms on March 15, 2012, 
had extended for one

[[Page 53827]]

winter season the daily entry limits and operational requirements for 
snowmobiles and snowcoaches adopted by the 2009 interim plan, which had 
been in effect for the prior two winter seasons.
    On July 5, 2011, the NPS published a proposed long-term rule to 
implement the preferred alternative identified in the Draft 
Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) (76 FR 39048). Under that 
alternative, the NPS proposed providing four different use-level 
combinations for snowmobiles and snowcoaches, which would vary 
according to a seasonal schedule. The NPS had intended to issue a 
record of decision and finalize a long-term rule for Yellowstone winter 
use by December 2011. However, some of the more than 59,000 public 
comments received on the DEIS raised reasonable questions as to long-
term management strategies and environmental impacts, and the NPS 
decided to delay implementation of a long-term rule in order to prepare 
a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) further analyzing 
the impacts of winter use under various long-term management options.
    Accordingly, in its December 2011 Record of Decision (ROD) (76 FR 
77249), the NPS announced its decision to select and implement 
Alternative 8 in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS). 
Alternative 8 extended for one additional winter season--the 2011-2012 
season--the daily entry limits and operating requirements of the 2009 
rule, which allowed up to 318 commercially guided, best available 
technology snowmobiles and 78 commercially guided snowcoaches in the 
park per day, as well as authorizing a variety of non-motorized uses. 
The DEIS and FEIS contained and analyzed an alternative--identified as 
Alternative 2--implementing those limits and operating requirements 
indefinitely into the future. On December 12, 2011, the NPS published a 
final rule to implement Alternative 8 (76 FR 77131). The NPS believed 
that the additional time afforded by a new one-season rule would allow 
it to complete the SEIS, decide on a long-term plan for managing winter 
use, and promulgate a new long-term rule before the beginning of the 
2012-2013 winter season.
    On June 29, 2012, the NPS released the Draft SEIS and published a 
Notice of Availability in the Federal Register (77 FR 38824). Public 
comment on the Draft SEIS closed on August 20, 2012. The response from 
the public and stakeholders has been robust. A majority of the 
substantive comments have addressed the proposal in the Draft SEIS's 
preferred alternative to manage snowmobiles and snowcoaches by a new 
concept known as ``transportation events.'' Numerous commenters have 
requested additional time to consider this new management concept and 
to respond substantively to it. Accordingly, the NPS has decided to 
reopen public comment on the Draft SEIS for an additional 30 days. 
Mindful of the short amount of time left before the December 15, 2012, 
opening of the 2012-2013 winter season and desiring to take the time 
necessary to make a reasoned, sustainable long-term decision on winter 
use, the NPS has decided to amend the December 2011 ROD. Utilizing the 
analyses contained in Alternative 2 in the 2011 FEIS and updated 
information gathered during the 2011-2012 winter season, the NPS is 
promulgating this new rule to extend for one additional winter season 
the 2011-2012 daily entry limits and operating requirements. The 
purpose of this publication is to solicit public comment on the NPS's 
decision to amend the December 2011 ROD and on the new proposed one-
season rule.

Section by Section Analysis

    The NPS is proposing to revise Sec.  7.13 paragraphs (l)(3)(ii) and 
(l)(4)(vi) and the introductory text of paragraphs (l)(7)(i) and 
(l)(8)(i) by replacing the terms ``the winter season of 2011-2012'' and 
``the winter of 2011-2012'' with the terms ``the winter season of 2012-
2013'' and ``the winter of 2012-2013.'' This would be the only change 
to the existing regulations.

Compliance With Other Laws and Executive Orders

Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Orders 12866 and 13563)

    Executive Order 12866 provides that the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs will review all significant rules. The Office of 
Information and Regulatory Affairs has determined that this rule is 
significant because it will raise novel legal or policy issues.
    Executive Order 13563 reaffirms the principles of E.O. 12866 while 
calling for improvements in the nation's regulatory system to promote 
predictability, to reduce uncertainty, and to use the best, most 
innovative, and least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory ends. 
The executive order directs agencies to consider regulatory approaches 
that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for 
the public where these approaches are relevant, feasible, and 
consistent with regulatory objectives. E.O. 13563 emphasizes further 
that regulations must be based on the best available science and that 
the rulemaking process must allow for public participation and an open 
exchange of ideas. We have developed this rule in a manner consistent 
with these requirements.

Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    This rule will not have a significant economic effect on a 
substantial number of small entities under the RFA (5 U.S.C. 601 et 
seq.).
    The NPS used two separate baselines for its regulatory flexibility 
analysis. If no new rule were passed, Baseline 1 would be defined by 
the no-action alternative in the EIS. Under this baseline, no motorized 
oversnow vehicles would be allowed in the park. In addition, the NPS 
defined a second baseline, Baseline 2. Baseline 2 represents the 
continuation of the same levels of use allowed under the 2009 interim 
regulation in place for the past three winter seasons. Under Baseline 
2, there would be a zero net change between the past three years and 
the actions being implemented under this rule, because the rule extends 
the management framework in place the past three winter seasons for one 
additional year. A regulatory flexibility analysis is included in the 
report titled ``Economic Analysis of Winter Use Regulations in 
Yellowstone National Park'' (RTI International, 2011). The NPS has 
reviewed the economic analysis contained in that report and has 
concluded that it still is relevant and that its results would apply to 
the additional year.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA)

    This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the SBREFA. 
This rule:
    (a) Does not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million 
or more.
    (b) Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for 
consumers, individual industries, Federal, state, or local government 
agencies, or geographic regions.
    (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 
rule has no effect on methods of manufacturing or production and 
specifically affects the Greater Yellowstone Area, not national or 
U.S.-based enterprises.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This rule does not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or

[[Page 53828]]

tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per 
year. The rule does not have a significant or unique effect on State, 
local or tribal governments or the private sector. A statement 
containing the information required by the UMRA (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) 
is not required. The rule addresses public use of national park lands, 
and imposes no requirements on other agencies or governments.

Takings (Executive Order 12630)

    Under the criteria in section 2 Executive Order 12630, this rule 
does not have significant takings implications. Access to private 
property located adjacent to the park will be afforded the same access 
during winter as before this rule. No other property is affected. A 
takings implication assessment is not required.

Federalism (Executive Order 13132)

    Under the criteria in section 1 of Executive Order 13132, this rule 
does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the 
preparation of a Federalism summary impact statement. It addresses 
public use of national park lands, and imposes no requirements on other 
agencies or governments. A Federalism summary impact statement is not 
required.

Civil Justice Reform (Executive Order 12988)

    This rule complies with the requirements of Executive Order 12988. 
Specifically, this rule:
    (a) Meets the criteria of section 3(a) requiring that all 
regulations be reviewed to eliminate errors and ambiguity and be 
written to minimize litigation; and
    (b) Meets the criteria of section 3(b)(2) requiring that all 
regulations be written in clear language and contain clear legal 
standards.

Consultation With Indian Tribes (Executive Order 13175 and Department 
Policy)

    The Department of the Interior strives to strengthen its 
government-to-government relationship with Indian Tribes through a 
commitment to consultation with Indian Tribes and recognition of their 
right to self-governance and tribal sovereignty. We have evaluated this 
rule under the Department's consultation policy and under the criteria 
in Executive Order 13175 and have determined that it has no substantial 
direct effects on federally recognized Indian tribes and that 
consultation under the Department's tribal consultation policy is not 
required. Numerous tribes in the area were consulted in the development 
of the previous winter use planning documents.

Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This rule does not contain any new collection of information that 
requires approval by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under 
the PRA of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). OMB has approved the 
collection requirement associated with Commercial Services and has 
assigned OMB control number 1024-0129 (expires 09/30/2013). An agency 
may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, 
a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB 
control number.

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    This winter use plan and rule constitute a major Federal action 
with the potential to significantly affect the quality of the human 
environment. The NPS prepared the 2011 Winter Use Plan/Environmental 
Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. 
The NPS is reexamining the analyses contained in the 2011 EIS, as well 
as new data from the 2011-2012 winter season, and intends to amend the 
December 2011 ROD (76 FR 77249) to authorize extending the current 
winter use management frame work for an additional year. The EIS is 
available for review at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/yell.

Effects on the Energy Supply (Executive Order 13211)

    This rule is not a significant energy action under the definition 
in Executive Order 13211, a statement of Energy Effects is not 
required.

Clarity of This Regulation

    We are required by Executive Orders 12866 (section 1 (b)(12)), 
12988 (section 3(b)(1)(B)), and 13563 (section 1(a)), and by the 
Presidential Memorandum of June 1, 1998, to write all rules in plain 
language. This means that each rule we publish must:
    (a) Be logically organized;
    (b) Use the active voice to address readers directly;
    (c) Use common, everyday words and clear language rather than 
jargon;
    (d) Be divided into short sections and sentences; and
    (e) Use lists and tables wherever possible.
    If you feel that we have not met these requirements, send us 
comments by one of the methods listed in the ADDRESSES section. To 
better help us revise the rule, your comments should be as specific as 
possible. For example, you should tell us the numbers of the sections 
or paragraphs that you find unclear, which sections or sentences are 
too long, the sections where you feel lists or tables would be useful, 
etc.

Public Availability of Comments

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

Length of the Comment Period

    This proposed rule is available for public review and comment for a 
period of 30 days. Under more typical circumstances the NPS would 
normally provide a 60-day comment period. In this case, new issues 
raised in the course of preparing the 2011 EIS necessitated the 
completion of a Supplemental EIS, resulting in the need for an 
expedited rulemaking process to authorize winter use during the 
upcoming winter season. For this regulation, we have determined that in 
order for a final rule to become effective by December 15, 2012, it is 
necessary to reduce the normal review and comment period to 30 days.
    Good cause exists for the shortened comment period for the 
following reasons:
    (1) The NPS has received voluminous public comment on previous 
rulemaking efforts regarding winter use of the park, including efforts 
in 2000, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008, and 2011. Those rulemaking efforts 
addressed many of the same issues as are addressed in this rulemaking, 
and a relatively small number of new issues are being raised.
    (2) Since at least December 2011 the NPS has in good faith publicly 
stated that the 2012-2013 winter season for Yellowstone would commence 
on or about December 15, 2012, and the public and businesses have made 
decisions based on the widespread public knowledge of this opening 
date.
    (3) Many persons planning to visit the park have already made 
travel plans in anticipation of the park being open for snowmobile and 
snowcoach use, such as reserving time off from work, booking airfares 
and hotel accommodations, making reservations for snowmobile or 
snowcoach tours, and the like. The Christmas-New Year period is one of 
the

[[Page 53829]]

most heavily visited times of the winter season. If the park does not 
open as scheduled on December 15, 2012, it would create unnecessary 
hardship for visitors who have already planned trips, and would likely 
result in economic losses for some visitors if reservations had to be 
cancelled. Significant revenue loss for businesses in and around the 
park would also occur. Many businesses in the gateway communities 
surrounding the park, and the people who rely upon them for their 
livelihoods, are highly dependent upon the park being open for the 
entire duration of the approximately 90-day season.
    (4) Snowmobile and snowcoach operators have made business decisions 
and investments for the winter season premised on an opening date of 
December 15, 2012. Such actions include purchasing new snowmobiles and 
snowcoaches for their fleets, making offers of employment, preparing 
advertising and other materials, and purchasing snowmobile accessories 
such as suits, helmets, boots, mittens, etc. A late opening would 
shorten an already-brief winter season, thereby depriving these 
businesses and others that depend on the winter season (such as hotels, 
restaurants, service stations, and other hospitality-oriented 
businesses) of revenue that is important to their livelihoods.

List of Subjects in 36 CFR Part 7

    National Parks, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    In consideration of the forgoing, the NPS proposes to amend 36 CFR 
part 7 as set forth below:

PART 7--SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM

    1. The authority citation for part 7 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1, 3, 9a, 462(k); Sec. 7.96 also issued 
under DC Code 10-137 (2001) and DC Code 50-2201 (2001).

    2. In Sec.  7.13 revise paragraphs (l)(3)(ii), (l)(4)(vi), 
(l)(7)(i) introductory text, and (l)(8)(i) introductory text to read as 
follows:


Sec.  7.13  Yellowstone National Park.

* * * * *
    (l) * * *
    (3) * * *
    (ii) The authority to operate a snowmobile in Yellowstone National 
Park established in paragraph (l)(3)(i) of this section is in effect 
only through the winter season of 2012-2013.
* * * * *
    (4) * * *
    (vi) The authority to operate a snowcoach in Yellowstone National 
Park established in paragraph (l)(4)(i) of this section is in effect 
only through the winter season of 2012-2013.
* * * * *
    (7) * * *
    (i) You may operate your snowmobile only upon designated oversnow 
routes established within the park in accordance with Sec.  2.18(c) of 
this chapter. The following oversnow routes are designated for 
snowmobile use through the winter of 2012-2013:
* * * * *
    (8) * * *
    (i) Authorized snowcoaches may be operated on the routes designated 
for snowmobile use in paragraphs (l)(7)(i)(A) through (l)(7)(i)(O) of 
this section. The restricted hours of snowmobile use described in 
paragraphs (1)(7)(i)(M) through (1)(7)(i)(O) do not apply to 
snowcoaches. Snowcoaches may also be operated on the following 
additional oversnow routes through the winter of 2012-2013:
* * * * *

    Dated: August 30, 2012.
Michael Bean,
Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and 
Parks.
[FR Doc. 2012-21828 Filed 8-31-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4312-CT-P