Notice of Request for an Information Collection; Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery, 68401-68402 [2016-23956]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 192 / Tuesday, October 4, 2016 / Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE National Institute of Food and Agriculture Notice of Request for an Information Collection; Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery National Institute of Food and Agriculture. ACTION: Notice and request for comments. AGENCY: The National Institute of Food and Agriculture, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public to take this opportunity to comment on the ‘‘Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery’’ for approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). This collection was developed to create a vehicle for obtaining stakeholder feedback. This notice announces our intent to submit this collection to Office of Management and Budget for approval and solicits comments on specific aspects for the proposed information collection. DATES: Consideration will be given to all comments received by December 5, 2016. Comments received after that date will be considered to the extent practicable. SUMMARY: Written comments may be submitted by any of the following methods: Email: rmartin@nifa.usda.gov; Fax: 202–720–0857; Mail: Office of Information Technology (OIT), NIFA, USDA, STOP 2216, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250– 2216. ADDRESSES: mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Martin, Records Officer; email: rmartin@nifa.usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery. Abstract: The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), U.S. Department of Agriculture, oversees roughly $1.5 billion to fund research, education, and extension efforts in a wide range of scientific fields related to agricultural and behavioral sciences. NIFA achieves its mission through partnerships with Land-Grant Universities (LGU), non-profit organizations, private sector firms, and other government agencies. These partners, through research, education, and extension activities, help NIFA and USDA address highly complex and multidimensional challenges in food VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:01 Oct 03, 2016 Jkt 241001 and agriculture. To ensure that our programs address the Nation’s food and agricultural priorities and our processes minimize burden without jeopardizing accountability, NIFA seeks OMB approval of a generic clearance to collect qualitative feedback on our service delivery. By qualitative feedback, we mean information that provides insights on perceptions and opinions, but are not statistical surveys or quantitative results that can be generalized to the population of study. This collection of information is necessary to enable NIFA, herein ‘‘the Agency,’’ to garner feedback from customers, stakeholders, and partners (herein ‘‘stakeholders’’) in an efficient and timely manner, and in accordance with our commitment to providing the highest quality service delivery. The information collected from our stakeholders will help NIFA identify emerging and significant priorities in food and agriculture; refine NIFA’s business processes; and promote inclusiveness and diversity to ensure that NIFA drives outcomes that meets the needs of all Americans. Improving agency programs requires ongoing assessment of NIFA’s programs and processes, by which we mean systematic review of the operation of a program compared to a set of explicit or implicit standards. NIFA will collect, analyze, and interpret information gathered through this generic clearance to identify strengths and weaknesses of current services and make improvements based on stakeholder feedback. If this information is not collected, NIFA’s ability to respond to stakeholders’ needs and continuously improve programs and services will be greatly diminished. The solicitation of feedback will target areas in: Strategic, portfolio, and programmatic planning; competitive and non-competitive awards processes; post-award management; information technology systems and Web sites; and, grants management training. Responses will inform efforts to improve or maintain the quality of service offered to the public. The Agency will only submit a collection for approval under this generic clearance if it meets the following conditions: • The collections are voluntary; • The collections are low-burden for respondents (based on considerations of total burden hours, total number of respondents, or burden-hours per respondent) and are low-cost for both the respondents and the Federal Government; PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 68401 • The collections are noncontroversial and do not raise issues of concern to other Federal agencies; • Any collection is targeted to the solicitation of opinions from respondents who have experience with the program or may have experience with the program in the near future; • Information gathered will be used only internally for general service improvement and program management purposes and is not intended for release outside of the agency; • Information gathered will not be used for the purpose of substantially informing influential policy decisions; and • Information gathered will yield qualitative information; the collections will not be designed or expected to yield statistically reliable results or used as though the results are generalizable to the population of study. Feedback collected under this generic clearance provides useful information, but it does not yield data that can be generalized to the overall population. This type of generic clearance for qualitative information will not be used for quantitative information collections that are designed to yield reliably actionable results, such as monitoring trends over time or documenting program performance. Such data uses require more rigorous designs that address: the target population to which generalizations will be made, the sampling frame, the sample design (including stratification and clustering), the precision requirements or power calculations that justify the proposed sample size, the expected response rate, methods for assessing potential nonresponse bias, the protocols for data collection, and any testing procedures that were or will be undertaken prior to fielding the study. Depending on the degree of influence the results are likely to have, such collections may still be eligible for submission for other generic mechanisms that are designed to yield quantitative results. As a general matter, information collections will not result in any new system of records containing privacy information and will not ask questions of a sensitive nature, such as sexual behavior and attitudes, religious beliefs, and other matters that are commonly considered private. Current Actions: Request for approval for a new collection of information. Type of Review: New. Affected Public: Individuals and Households, Businesses and Organizations, State, Local or Tribal Government. Estimated Number of Respondents: 11,250. E:\FR\FM\04OCN1.SGM 04OCN1 mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES 68402 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 192 / Tuesday, October 4, 2016 / Notices Below we provide projected average estimates for the next three years: Average Expected Annual Number of activities: 15. Average number of Respondents per Activity: 750. Annual responses: 11,250. Frequency of Response: Once per request. Average minutes per response: 30. Burden hours: 5,625. Request for Comments: Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval. Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and (e) estimates of capital or start-up costs and costs of operation, maintenance, and purchase of services to provide information. Burden means the total time, effort, or financial resources expended by persons to generate, maintain, retain, disclose or provide information to or for a Federal agency. This includes the time needed to review instructions; develop, acquire, install and utilize technology and systems for the purpose of collecting, validating and verifying information, processing and maintaining information, and disclosing and providing information; train personnel and to be able to respond to a collection of information, to search data sources, to complete and review the collection of information; and to transmit or otherwise disclose the information. All written comments will be available for public inspection on Regulations.gov. 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 Office of Management and Budget control number. Done at Washington, DC, this 23rd day of September, 2016. Catherine E. Woteki, Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics. [FR Doc. 2016–23956 Filed 10–3–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–22–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:01 Oct 03, 2016 Jkt 241001 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Business-Cooperative Service Notice of Request for Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection Rural Business-Cooperative Service, USDA. ACTION: Proposed collection; comments requested. AGENCY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Rural BusinessCooperative Service’s intention to request an extension for a currently approved information collection in support of the Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Program. DATES: Comments on this notice must be received by December 5, 2016, to be assured of consideration. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Director, Specialty Programs Division, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, STOP 3226, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250–3226, Telephone (202) 720–1400. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Program. OMB Number: 0570–0035. Expiration Date of Approval: February 28, 2017. Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved information collection. Abstract: Under this program, loans and grants are provided to electric and telecommunications utilities that have borrowed funds from the Agency. The purpose of the program is to encourage these electric and telecommunications utilities to promote rural economic development and job creation projects such as business start-up costs, business expansion, community development, and business incubator projects. The utilities must use program loan funds to make a pass-through loan to an ultimate recipient such as a business. The utility is responsible for fully repaying its loan to the Government, even if the ultimate recipient does not repay its loan. The intermediary must use program grant funds, along with its required contribution, to create a revolving loan fund that the utility will operate and administer. Loans to the ultimate recipient are made from the revolving loan fund for a variety of community development projects. The information requested is necessary and vital in order for the Agency to be able to make prudent and financial analysis decisions. SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 2 hours per response. Respondents: Rural Utilities Service Electric and Telecommunications Borrowers. Estimated Number of Respondents: 120. Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 17. Estimated Number of Responses: 2,075. Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 4,728. Copies of this information collection can be obtained from Jeanne Jacobs, Regulations and Paperwork Management Branch, Support Services Division at (202) 692–0040. Comments: Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of USDA, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of USDA’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments may be sent to Jeanne Jacobs, Regulations and Paperwork Management Branch, Support Services Division, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rural Development, STOP 0742, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250–0742. All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record. Dated: September 28, 2016. Justin Hatmaker, Acting Administrator, Rural BusinessCooperative Service. [FR Doc. 2016–23914 Filed 10–3–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–XY–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Business-Cooperative Service Notice of Request for Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Department of Agriculture. AGENCY: E:\FR\FM\04OCN1.SGM 04OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 192 (Tuesday, October 4, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 68401-68402]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-23956]



[[Page 68401]]

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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

National Institute of Food and Agriculture


Notice of Request for an Information Collection; Generic 
Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service 
Delivery

AGENCY: National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

ACTION: Notice and request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The National Institute of Food and Agriculture, as part of its 
continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites 
the general public to take this opportunity to comment on the ``Generic 
Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service 
Delivery'' for approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). This 
collection was developed to create a vehicle for obtaining stakeholder 
feedback. This notice announces our intent to submit this collection to 
Office of Management and Budget for approval and solicits comments on 
specific aspects for the proposed information collection.

DATES: Consideration will be given to all comments received by December 
5, 2016. Comments received after that date will be considered to the 
extent practicable.

ADDRESSES: Written comments may be submitted by any of the following 
methods: Email: rmartin@nifa.usda.gov; Fax: 202-720-0857; Mail: Office 
of Information Technology (OIT), NIFA, USDA, STOP 2216, 1400 
Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-2216.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Martin, Records Officer; email: 
rmartin@nifa.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Title: Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback 
on Agency Service Delivery.
    Abstract: The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), 
U.S. Department of Agriculture, oversees roughly $1.5 billion to fund 
research, education, and extension efforts in a wide range of 
scientific fields related to agricultural and behavioral sciences. NIFA 
achieves its mission through partnerships with Land-Grant Universities 
(LGU), non-profit organizations, private sector firms, and other 
government agencies. These partners, through research, education, and 
extension activities, help NIFA and USDA address highly complex and 
multidimensional challenges in food and agriculture. To ensure that our 
programs address the Nation's food and agricultural priorities and our 
processes minimize burden without jeopardizing accountability, NIFA 
seeks OMB approval of a generic clearance to collect qualitative 
feedback on our service delivery. By qualitative feedback, we mean 
information that provides insights on perceptions and opinions, but are 
not statistical surveys or quantitative results that can be generalized 
to the population of study.
    This collection of information is necessary to enable NIFA, herein 
``the Agency,'' to garner feedback from customers, stakeholders, and 
partners (herein ``stakeholders'') in an efficient and timely manner, 
and in accordance with our commitment to providing the highest quality 
service delivery. The information collected from our stakeholders will 
help NIFA identify emerging and significant priorities in food and 
agriculture; refine NIFA's business processes; and promote 
inclusiveness and diversity to ensure that NIFA drives outcomes that 
meets the needs of all Americans.
    Improving agency programs requires ongoing assessment of NIFA's 
programs and processes, by which we mean systematic review of the 
operation of a program compared to a set of explicit or implicit 
standards. NIFA will collect, analyze, and interpret information 
gathered through this generic clearance to identify strengths and 
weaknesses of current services and make improvements based on 
stakeholder feedback. If this information is not collected, NIFA's 
ability to respond to stakeholders' needs and continuously improve 
programs and services will be greatly diminished.
    The solicitation of feedback will target areas in: Strategic, 
portfolio, and programmatic planning; competitive and non-competitive 
awards processes; post-award management; information technology systems 
and Web sites; and, grants management training. Responses will inform 
efforts to improve or maintain the quality of service offered to the 
public.
    The Agency will only submit a collection for approval under this 
generic clearance if it meets the following conditions:
     The collections are voluntary;
     The collections are low-burden for respondents (based on 
considerations of total burden hours, total number of respondents, or 
burden-hours per respondent) and are low-cost for both the respondents 
and the Federal Government;
     The collections are non-controversial and do not raise 
issues of concern to other Federal agencies;
     Any collection is targeted to the solicitation of opinions 
from respondents who have experience with the program or may have 
experience with the program in the near future;
     Information gathered will be used only internally for 
general service improvement and program management purposes and is not 
intended for release outside of the agency;
     Information gathered will not be used for the purpose of 
substantially informing influential policy decisions; and
     Information gathered will yield qualitative information; 
the collections will not be designed or expected to yield statistically 
reliable results or used as though the results are generalizable to the 
population of study.
    Feedback collected under this generic clearance provides useful 
information, but it does not yield data that can be generalized to the 
overall population. This type of generic clearance for qualitative 
information will not be used for quantitative information collections 
that are designed to yield reliably actionable results, such as 
monitoring trends over time or documenting program performance. Such 
data uses require more rigorous designs that address: the target 
population to which generalizations will be made, the sampling frame, 
the sample design (including stratification and clustering), the 
precision requirements or power calculations that justify the proposed 
sample size, the expected response rate, methods for assessing 
potential non-response bias, the protocols for data collection, and any 
testing procedures that were or will be undertaken prior to fielding 
the study. Depending on the degree of influence the results are likely 
to have, such collections may still be eligible for submission for 
other generic mechanisms that are designed to yield quantitative 
results.
    As a general matter, information collections will not result in any 
new system of records containing privacy information and will not ask 
questions of a sensitive nature, such as sexual behavior and attitudes, 
religious beliefs, and other matters that are commonly considered 
private.
    Current Actions: Request for approval for a new collection of 
information.
    Type of Review: New.
    Affected Public: Individuals and Households, Businesses and 
Organizations, State, Local or Tribal Government.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 11,250.

[[Page 68402]]

    Below we provide projected average estimates for the next three 
years:
    Average Expected Annual Number of activities: 15.
    Average number of Respondents per Activity: 750.
    Annual responses: 11,250.
    Frequency of Response: Once per request.
    Average minutes per response: 30.
    Burden hours: 5,625.
    Request for Comments: Comments submitted in response to this notice 
will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval. 
Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is 
necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, 
including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the 
accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the collection of 
information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of 
the information to be collected; (d) ways to minimize the burden of the 
collection of information on respondents, including through the use of 
automated collection techniques or other forms of information 
technology; and (e) estimates of capital or start-up costs and costs of 
operation, maintenance, and purchase of services to provide 
information. Burden means the total time, effort, or financial 
resources expended by persons to generate, maintain, retain, disclose 
or provide information to or for a Federal agency. This includes the 
time needed to review instructions; develop, acquire, install and 
utilize technology and systems for the purpose of collecting, 
validating and verifying information, processing and maintaining 
information, and disclosing and providing information; train personnel 
and to be able to respond to a collection of information, to search 
data sources, to complete and review the collection of information; and 
to transmit or otherwise disclose the information.
    All written comments will be available for public inspection on 
Regulations.gov.
    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 Office of Management and Budget control number.

    Done at Washington, DC, this 23rd day of September, 2016.
Catherine E. Woteki,
Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics.
[FR Doc. 2016-23956 Filed 10-3-16; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-22-P