Conforming the Acceptable Separation Distance (ASD) Standards for Residential Propane Tanks to Industry Standards, 4225-4229 [2020-00440]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 16 / Friday, January 24, 2020 / Rules and Regulations litigation, establish clear legal standards, and reduce burden. H. Executive Order 13175 (Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments) The Department has determined that this rulemaking will not have a substantial direct effect on one or more Indian tribes, will not impose substantial direct compliance costs on Indian tribal governments, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, and will not pre-empt tribal law. Accordingly, the requirements of Section 5 of Executive Order 13175 do not apply to this rulemaking. I. Executive Order 13771 (Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs) This rule is not subject to the requirements of E.O. 13771 (82 FR 9339, February 3, 2017), because it is expected to be de minimis under E.O. 13771. J. Paperwork Reduction Act This rule does not impose any new information collection requirements under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35. The Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application, DS–160, already allows visa applicants to identify medical treatment as a subset of B visa travel purpose. Consular officers would evaluate the application using existing forms and would not need new approved information collections. List of Subjects in 22 CFR Part 41 Administrative practice and procedure, Foreign Relations, Visas, Aliens, Foreign official, Employment, Students, Cultural Exchange Programs. § 41.31 Temporary visitors for business or pleasure. ACTION: (b) * * * (2)(i) The term pleasure, as used in INA 101(a)(15)(B) for the purpose of visa issuance, refers to legitimate activities of a recreational character, including tourism, amusement, visits with friends or relatives, rest, medical treatment, and activities of a fraternal, social, or service nature, and does not include obtaining a visa for the primary purpose of obtaining U.S. citizenship for a child by giving birth in the United States. (ii) Any visa applicant who seeks medical treatment in the United States under this provision shall be denied a visa under INA section 214(b) if unable to establish, to the satisfaction of a consular officer, a legitimate reason why he or she wishes to travel to the United States for medical treatment, that a medical practitioner or facility in the United States has agreed to provide treatment, and that the applicant has reasonably estimated the duration of the visit and all associated costs. The applicant also shall be denied a visa under INA section 214(b) if unable to establish to the satisfaction of the consular officer that he or she has the means derived from lawful sources and intent to pay for the medical treatment and all incidental expenses, including transportation and living expenses, either independently or with the prearranged assistance of others. (iii) Any B nonimmigrant visa applicant who a consular officer has reason to believe will give birth during her stay in the United States is presumed to be traveling for the primary purpose of obtaining U.S. citizenship for the child. * * * * * SUMMARY: Carl C. Risch, Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs, Department of State. [FR Doc. 2020–01218 Filed 1–23–20; 8:45 am] Text of the Rule BILLING CODE 4710–06–P Accordingly, for the reasons stated in the preamble, the Department is amending 22 CFR part 41 as follows: PART 41—VISAS: DOCUMENTATION OF IMMIGRANTS UNDER THE IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY ACT, AS AMENDED DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT 24 CFR Part 51 [Docket No: FR–6054–F–02] RIN 2506–AC45 1. The authority citation for part 41 is revised to read as follows: lotter on DSKBCFDHB2PROD with RULES ■ Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101; 1102; 1104; 1182; 1184; 1185 note (section 7209 of Pub. L. 108–458, as amended by section 546 of Pub. L. 109–295); 1323; 1361; 2651a. 2. In § 41.31, revise paragraph (b)(2) to read as follows: ■ VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:58 Jan 23, 2020 Jkt 250001 Conforming the Acceptable Separation Distance (ASD) Standards for Residential Propane Tanks to Industry Standards Office of the Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development, HUD. AGENCY: PO 00000 Frm 00035 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 4225 Final rule. This final rule reduces regulatory and cost burden on communities that may be restricted in their ability to site HUD-assisted projects, by allowing HUD-assisted projects near stationary aboveground propane storage tanks with a capacity of 1,000 gallons or less if the storage tanks comply with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 58 (2017). Based on consideration of public comments, HUD is adopting this 1,000-gallon limit in lieu of the 250-gallon limit contemplated in the proposed rule. This final rule incorporates by reference NFPA 58 (2017), a voluntary consensus standard for public safety that establishes safety standards used by the propane industry and operators regarding storage, handling, transportation, and use of propane. DATES: Effective Date: February 24, 2020. The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the rule is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of February 24, 2020. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Danielle Schopp, Director, Office of Environment and Energy, Office of Community Planning and Development, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW, Washington, DC 20410; telephone number 202–402–5226 (this is not a tollfree number). Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling the Federal Relay Service at 800–877–8339 (this is a toll-free number). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background On December 10, 2018, HUD published a rule in the Federal Register, at 83 FR 63457, which proposed expanding HUD’s ability to approve assistance for projects sited near propane storage tanks (otherwise known as ‘‘Liquified Petroleum Gas containers’’ or ‘‘LPG containers’’). The rule proposed amending HUD regulations at 24 CFR part 51, subpart C, which establish the Acceptable Separation Distance (ASD) that must be kept between HUD-assisted projects and containers of hazardous substances, by creating an exception for aboveground propane storage tanks of a capacity of 250 gallons or less if the storage tank complies with NFPA 58 (2017), a voluntary consensus standard that establishes safety standards used by the propane industry and operators regarding storage, handling, transportation, and use of propane, as well as all underground storage tanks. HUD’s proposed rule was intended to modernize outdated codified safety E:\FR\FM\24JAR1.SGM 24JAR1 4226 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 16 / Friday, January 24, 2020 / Rules and Regulations standards. HUD’s current standards, codified at 24 CFR part 51, subpart C, are based on the findings of studies conducted by the Department, in 1975 and 1982.1 The effect of these standards is to prescribe the ASD of HUD-assisted projects from specific hazardous operations, unless appropriate mitigating measures are implemented. Substances deemed hazardous include petrochemical products, such as propane. HUD-assisted projects include the development, construction, rehabilitation, modernization, or conversion with HUD subsidy, grant assistance, loan, loan guarantee, or mortgage insurance of any project intended for residential, institutional, recreational, commercial, or industrial use. Mitigation measures can be costly and limit choices for siting a HUD-assisted project. HUD’s experience has been that there are significant practical and economic difficulties in mitigating offsite residential propane tanks located on adjacent properties. HUD has recently provided waivers for approval of HUDassisted sites that have propane tanks in compliance with NFPA 58 (2017) on the basis that such compliance mitigated any danger to HUD-assisted projects sited adjacent to the hazard. Based on HUD’s experience, HUD issued its proposed rule to streamline and update its current rule. lotter on DSKBCFDHB2PROD with RULES II. Changes and Clarifications Made in This Final Rule This final rule follows publication of the December 10, 2018, proposed rule and takes into consideration the public comments received on the proposed rule. In response to public comment, a discussion of which is presented in the following section of this preamble, and in further consideration of issues addressed at the proposed rule stage, the Department is making changes, described below, in this final rule. A. Propane Tanks of up to 1,000 Gallons Exempted From Hazard ASD Restrictions HUD received several comments requesting reconsideration of the 250gallon limit for aboveground propane tanks exempted from HUD’s ASD requirements. After performing further analysis on common residential tank sizes and potential risks posed by larger tanks, HUD has determined that exempting tanks up to 1,000 gallons would increase the rule’s effectiveness 1 Safety Consideration in Siting Housing Projects, prepared by Arthur D. Little Inc., 1975; and Urban Development Siting with Respect to Hazardous Commercial/Industrial Facilities, by Rolf Jensen and Associates Inc., 1982. VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:58 Jan 23, 2020 Jkt 250001 without posing additional risk. As such, the definition of ‘‘hazard’’ in § 51.201 has been revised to exempt tanks up to 1,000 gallons. The justification for this change is described below. 1. Common Residential Tank Sizes Typical propane consumption and the range of typical tank sizes vary widely between warmer and cooler climates. An average-size modern home using high-efficiency propane heating equipment and other appliances in a warm climate region can expect to use 194 to 258 gallons per year, while the same home in a cold climate region would typically use 991 to 1,844 gallons per year.2 The same variables that impact propane consumption naturally also impact the choice of propane tank sizing. In addition, the average customer, especially in a cold climate prefers to minimize the frequency of refueling to ensure that they don’t run out given the high heating loads they experience in the winter. Propane prices also fluctuate with the market throughout the year and tend to be on the higher side during the heating season and lower in the summer. Larger tanks allow customers to buy larger quantities of propane during periods of lower prices resulting in better savings. They also save on delivery related fees by having fewer fill ups. The tank size thus becomes a cost controlling factor for the customer, and tank sizes up to 1,000 gallons are regularly used for residential purposes.3 2. Safety of 1,000-Gallon Propane Tanks The reliability of propane tanks has increased significantly over the past 30 years and studies suggest that the evolution of industry safety practices has reduced the probability of propane tank failure.4 Studies by the NFPA, documented in the rule’s Regulatory Impact Analysis, show that propane is not a leading cause of fires or listed as a source of residential structure fires in the United States. Propane tanks are extremely durable. In a study performed by the U.S. Department of Defense and the Energy Research and Development Administration, these tanks sustained very little damage even from the energy of a simulated nuclear blast.5 This experiment and others conducted in the 2 Energy and Environmental Analysis of Propane Energy Pod Homes, Prepared for the Propane Education & Research Council, 2011. 3 See NFPA 58 LP-Gas Code Handbook (2017). 4 See Ahrens, M. (2017), Ahrens, M. (2018), Flynn, J. (2010), and Hall. J.R. (2014). 5 The Effects of Nuclear Weapons, Compiled and edited by Samuel Glasstone and Philip J. Dolan., 1977. PO 00000 Frm 00036 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 propane industry demonstrate that propane tank explosions are difficult and rare. Furthermore, this rule does not remove all safe distance requirements for LPG containers sited near HUDassisted projects. All tanks exempted from HUD’s ASD requirements under this rule must be fully compliant with NFPA (2017) standards, including NFPA separation distance requirements. Tanks locations must meet a separation distance between the container and important buildings 6 or line of adjoining property that can be built upon, in accordance with the NFPA 58. Tanks between 125 and 500 gallons must be at least 10 feet apart from important buildings or property lines of adjoining property that can be built upon, while tanks between 501 and 1,000 gallons must be at least 25 feet apart. Under NFPA 58 and this rule’s revision of 24 CFR part 51, tanks under 125 gallons would not require a separation distance. For the reasons described above, HUD has determined that LPG containers with capacities of up to 1,000 gallons that comply with NFPA 58 (2017) will no longer be subject to the hazard restrictions posed by 24 CFR part 51. Since the separation distance imposed by NFPA 58 compliance is sufficient to ensure the safety of HUD-assisted projects, increasing the size of tank covered by this exception will reduce regulatory and cost burden on even more projects and communities without any significant additional risk. B. Other Changes and Clarifications One commenter stated that it was unclear whether the tank size referenced in § 51.201 definition of ‘‘hazard’’ was to be measured in water gallon capacity or propane gallon capacity. As a result, HUD has amended the language of § 51.201 to clarify that tanks are measured in water gallon capacity. This language was clarified in order to align the rule with language in NFPA 58 (which uses water capacity to determine ASD standards). The American Society of Mechanical Engineers, which certifies propane tanks, also rates tanks in terms of their water capacity. Additionally, a commenter found the language used to describe propane tanks (‘‘Containers which are designed to hold 6 According to the NFPA 58 LP-Gas Code Handbook, a building can be considered important for a number of reasons such as high replacement value, its human occupancy, or vital importance of contents to a business. A building with characteristics that hinder emergency responders’ access and ability to safely apply water to a tank or act as an impediment to applying water should also be considered an important building. E:\FR\FM\24JAR1.SGM 24JAR1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 16 / Friday, January 24, 2020 / Rules and Regulations lotter on DSKBCFDHB2PROD with RULES liquefied propane gas . . .’’) confusing. To increase clarity and accuracy, HUD is amending the phrase to read: ‘‘Containers which are used to hold liquefied petroleum gas.’’ First, replacing ‘‘designed’’ with ‘‘used’’ more accurately describes the scope of the definition, since some containers that are not designed to hold LPG are used to hold it nonetheless, while still complying with NFPA safety requirements. Second, HUD is replacing ‘‘liquified propane gas’’ with ‘‘liquefied petroleum gas’’ because the gas used in heating systems is sometimes comprised of not only propane, but butane as well. These changes will increase consistency between this final rule and NFPA 58 (2017). III. Discussion of Public Comments Received on December 10, 2018, Proposed Rule The public comment period for the proposed rule closed on February 8, 2019. HUD received six public comments in response to the proposed rule. These comments were submitted by a nationally recognized fire safety codes and standards organization, the national trade group for the propane industry, a nonprofit affordable housing developer, and private citizens. None of the commenters opposed conforming the ASD standards for residential propane tanks to industry standards. Commenters were generally supportive of the proposed rule, but, as provided in the following section of this Preamble, they also recommended changes or clarifications, several of which are discussed above. Comment: How will this rule impact HUD-assisted projects sited near multiple propane tanks, or propane tanks stored near other gases. HUD Response: Under this final rule, LPG tanks of 1,000 gallons or less are not subject to ASD requirements, regardless of how many tanks are present, if they comply with NFPA code 58 (2017). The exclusion from the ASD requirement applies only to LPG tanks. If there are other gases stored in stationary aboveground containers, the ASD must be calculated for those nonpropane containers. Comment: HUD should not exempt all underground propane containers from hazard restrictions, but only those which comply with applicable Federal, State, or local safety standards, because improperly spaced underground containers can leak gas into underground structures. HUD Response: HUD is declining to implement this change in this final rule, as this rule is amending safety standards relating to fire and blast hazards, which VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:58 Jan 23, 2020 Jkt 250001 do not take into consideration other issues such as vapor contamination. HUD performs environmental review of most projects, including multifamily housing and new construction, which captures information related to vapor contamination to document compliance with the standards at 24 CFR 50.3(i) and 58.5(i)(2), using investigative techniques including but not limited to ASTM Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessment.7 Furthermore, this rule is conforming the relevant regulation with HUD’s longstanding policy of considering underground tanks exempt from the ASD restrictions listed in 24 CFR 51 subpart C because they are shielded by the topography from posing fire or blast risks to HUD-assisted projects and, therefore, do not meet the definition of ‘‘hazard’’ at § 51.201. This is also consistent with HUD’s treatment of LPG pipelines in existing regulations, in which LPG pipelines are excluded from the definition of ‘‘hazard’’ so long as they are either underground or comply with Federal, State, and local safety standards. Comment: HUD should update the FHA Single Family Housing Policy Handbook to indicate that FHA can assist in the purchase of properties with underground propane tanks. HUD Response: This final rule focuses on updates to the regulation at 24 CFR 51 subpart C, and updates to subregulatory guidance are beyond the scope of this rulemaking. Nevertheless, HUD agrees that the referenced guidance should reflect these revisions. Comment: The rule only incorporates NFPA 58 by reference for LPG containers 250 gallons or less which are exempt from hazard restrictions. HUD should incorporate NFPA 58 by reference for all LPG containers regardless of size in order to maintain a consistent approach to handling LPG as a hazard. HUD Response: As discussed above, in this final rule HUD is incorporating NFPA 58 (2017) by reference for LPG containers 1,000 gallons or less that are exempt from hazard restrictions. Containers larger than 1,000 gallons will still be defined as ‘‘hazards’’ and will still need to comply with HUD’s safety standards at 24 CFR part 51, subpart C. This rulemaking is intended to mitigate regulatory and cost burden related to residential propane tanks (which typically hold 1,000 gallons or less) 8 and is not intended to address commercial, industrial, or agricultural 7 HUD’s environmental review regulations can be found at 24 CFR parts 50, 51, 55, and 58. 8 See NFPA 58 LP-Gas Code Handbook (2017). PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 4227 propane tanks (which typically hold more than 1,000 gallons).9 IV. Incorporation by Reference This rule incorporates the following voluntary consensus standard for siting of HUD-assisted projects near aboveground propane storage tanks that hold up to 1000 gallons: NFPA 58 Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code (2017). The NFPA develops building, fire, and electrical safety codes and standards. Federal agencies frequently use these codes and standards as the basis for developing Federal regulations concerning safety. NFPA 58 (2017) provides industry benchmark and operational information and standards for safe propane storage, handling, transportation, and use. NFPA 58 (2017) mitigates risks and ensures safe installations, to prevent failures, leaks, and tampering that could lead to fires and explosions. The regulation cannot account for future editions of NFPA that do not yet exist. Therefore, if HUD wishes to revise the standard in the future to incorporate newer editions of NFPA 58 this would require further rulemaking. NFPA 58 (2017) is available online, via read-only access, at https:// www.nfpa.org/codes-and-standards/allcodes-and-standards/list-of-codes-andstandards/detail?code=58. Members of the public may visit the link and create a username and password to view the free-access edition. The standard may also be obtained from the National Fire Protection Association at 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169, telephone number (800) 344–3555, fax number (800) 593–6372. V. Findings and Certifications Regulatory Review—Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 Under Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review), a determination must be made whether a regulatory action is significant and, therefore, subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in accordance with the requirements of the order. Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulations and Regulatory Review) directs executive agencies to analyze regulations that are ‘‘outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome, and to modify, streamline, expand, or repeal them in accordance with what has been learned.’’ Executive Order 13563 also directs that, where relevant, feasible, and consistent with regulatory objectives, and to the extent permitted by law, agencies are to 9 Ibid. E:\FR\FM\24JAR1.SGM 24JAR1 4228 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 16 / Friday, January 24, 2020 / Rules and Regulations identify and consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public. HUD has examined the economic, budgetary, legal, and policy implications of this action and has determined that this final rule is a significant regulatory action under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 (but not an economically significant action). HUD has prepared a regulatory impact analysis that addresses the costs and benefits of the final rule. The analysis is available at Regulations.gov and is part of the docket file for this rule. lotter on DSKBCFDHB2PROD with RULES Executive Order 13771 Executive Order 13771, entitled ‘‘Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs,’’ was issued on January 30, 2017. This final rule is an Executive Order 13771 deregulatory action. Details on the estimated cost savings of this rule can be found in the rule’s economic analysis. Regulatory Flexibility Act The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) generally requires an agency to conduct a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements, unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Small entities include small businesses, small nonprofit organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions. This rule updates a codified regulation to reduce regulatory and cost burden on communities that may be restricted in their ability to site HUDassisted projects because of the presence of stationary aboveground propane storage tanks that may be nearby. Specifically, the rule allows the siting of HUD-assisted projects near stationary aboveground propane storage tanks with a capacity of 1,000 gallons or less if the storage tank complies with NFPA Code 58 (2017). HUD has determined that the rule would result in the reduction of costly mitigation measures. Small entities affected by the rule include owner-occupied single family, small public housing authorities, and a limited number of multifamily projects. Notwithstanding, HUD has determined that the rule’s impact will be to reduce administrative burdens and generate cost savings estimated to be from $200,000–$18,000,000 per year. Due to economies of scale and the cost of compliance with the existing rule, these reductions of administrative burden will provide relatively greater benefit to entities that are small. This rule would VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:58 Jan 23, 2020 Jkt 250001 have minimal impact on small firms because they would not be required to modify current operational procedures. The rule will eliminate the need for costly waiver processes and mitigation costs on the part of these small entities. For example, as described in the Regulatory Impact Analysis, of 1200 small rental properties in Mississippi applying for disaster recovery assistance after Hurricane Katrina, 750 required additional compliance measures or a waiver under current 24 CFR part 51 subpart C in order to be eligible for assistance. Removing such obstacles to assistance would have particularly beneficial impact for similarly situated small rental properties, and other small entities, that are assisted going forward. Similarly, as discussed in the Regulatory Impact Analysis, HUD’s 2017 waiver for certain Community Development Block Grant and Home Investment Partnerships programs in Vermont included both residences and small businesses; specifically, restaurants. In waiving the requirements of the existing regulation as to these small businesses, HUD noted that in 2011 there were 1,346 restaurants in Vermont using propane. These restaurants were affected by the cost or practicability of compliance with the existing rule, and these costs will be saved in future projects under this rule. Accordingly, the undersigned certifies that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Environmental Impact A Finding of No Significant Impact with respect to the environment for this rule has been made in accordance with HUD regulations at 24 CFR part 50, which implement section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)). The Finding of No Significant Impact is available for public inspection between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., weekdays in the Regulations Division, Office of General Counsel, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW, Room 10276, Washington, DC 20410–5000. Due to security measures at the HUD Headquarters building, please schedule an appointment to review the Finding by calling the Regulations Division at (202) 708–3055 (this is not a toll-free number). Individuals with speech or hearing impairments may access this number via TTY by calling the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877–8339. The Finding of No Significant Impact will also be available for review in the docket for this rule on Regulations.gov. PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 Federalism Impact Executive Order 13132 (entitled ‘‘Federalism’’) prohibits, to the extent practicable and permitted by law, an agency from promulgating a regulation that has federalism implications and either imposes substantial direct compliance costs on State and local governments and is not required by statute, or preempts State law, unless the relevant requirements of section 6 of the Executive order are met. This rule does not have federalism implications and does not impose substantial direct compliance costs on State and local governments or preempt State law within the meaning of the Executive order. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531– 1538) (UMRA) establishes requirements for Federal agencies to assess the effects of their regulatory actions on State, local, and tribal governments and on the private sector. This rule would not impose any Federal mandates on any State, local, or tribal governments, or on the private sector, within the meaning of UMRA. List of Subjects in 24 CFR Part 51 Airports, Hazardous substances, Housing standards, Incorporation by reference, Noise control. Accordingly, for the reasons stated in the foregoing preamble, HUD amends 24 CFR part 51 as follows: PART 51—ENVIRONMENTAL CRITERIA AND STANDARDS 1. The authority citation for 24 CFR part 51 subpart C continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 42 U.S.C. 3535(d), unless otherwise noted. 2. In § 51.201, revise the definition of ‘‘hazard’’ to read as follows: ■ § 51.201 Definitions. * * * * * Hazard—means any stationary container which stores, handles, or processes hazardous substances of an explosive or fire prone nature. The term ‘‘hazard’’ does not include: (1) Pipelines for the transmission of hazardous substances, if such pipelines are located underground, or comply with applicable Federal, State and local safety standards; (2) Containers with a capacity of 100 gallons or less when they contain common liquid industrial fuels, such as gasoline, fuel oil, kerosene, and crude oil, since they generally would pose no E:\FR\FM\24JAR1.SGM 24JAR1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 16 / Friday, January 24, 2020 / Rules and Regulations Dated: January 9, 2020. David C. Woll, Jr., Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development. amend the SIP by providing a more efficient way to perform emissions sampling on air pollution sources throughout Missouri. The State requested approval of incorporating by reference the federally defined methods for stack testing. These revisions are administrative in nature and do not affect the stringency of the SIP. The EPA’s approval of this rule revision is being done in accordance with the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA). DATES: This final rule is effective on February 24, 2020. ADDRESSES: The EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID No. EPA–R07–OAR–2019–0656. All documents in the docket are listed on the https://www.regulations.gov website. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available through https:// www.regulations.gov or please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section for additional information. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jan Simpson, Environmental Protection Agency, Region 7 Office, Air Quality Planning Branch, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kansas 66219; telephone number (913) 551–7089; email address simpson.jan@epa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Throughout this document ‘‘we,’’ ‘‘us,’’ and ‘‘our’’ refer to the EPA. [FR Doc. 2020–00440 Filed 1–23–20; 8:45 am] Table of Contents BILLING CODE 4210–67–P I. Background II. What is being addressed in this document? III. Have the requirements for approval of a SIP revision been met? IV. What action is the EPA taking? V. Incorporation by Reference VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews danger in terms of thermal radiation or blast overpressure to a project; (3) Facilities that are shielded from a proposed HUD-assisted project by the topography, because these topographic features effectively provide a mitigating measure already in place; (4) All underground containers; and (5) Containers used to hold liquefied petroleum gas with a volumetric capacity not to exceed 1,000 gallons water capacity, if they comply with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 58. NFPA 58, Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code, 2017 Edition, copyright 2016 is incorporated by reference into this section with the approval of the Director of the Federal Register, under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. All approved material is available for inspection at HUD’s Office of Environment and Energy, 202–402– 5226, and is available from National Fire Protection Association, 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169, telephone number 800–344–3555, fax number 800–593–6372, www.nfpa.org. It is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, email fedreg.legal@ nara.gov or visit www.archives.gov/ federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html. Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access the numbers above through TTY by calling the Federal Relay Service, toll-free, at 800– 877–8339. * * * * * ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA–R07–OAR–2019–0656; FRL–10004– 15–Region 7] Air Plan Approval; Missouri; Sampling Methods for Air Pollution Sources Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Final rule. lotter on DSKBCFDHB2PROD with RULES AGENCY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve a revision to the State Implementation Plan (SIP) for the State of Missouri submitted by the State on October 25, 2019. The revisions will SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:58 Jan 23, 2020 Jkt 250001 I. Background On December 3, 2019, the EPA proposed in the Federal Register approval of the SIP submission. See 84 FR 66096. The proposed revisions would amend the SIP by providing a more efficient way to perform emissions sampling on air pollution sources throughout Missouri. The State requested approval of incorporating by reference the federally defined methods for stack testing. The EPA solicited comments on the proposed revisions to Missouri’s SIP and received no comments. PO 00000 Frm 00039 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 4229 II. What is being addressed in this document? The EPA is approving revisions to the Missouri SIP submitted by the State of Missouri to the EPA on October 25, 2019. The revisions to the previously federally approved Missouri State rule 10 CSR 10–6.030 Sampling Methods for Air Pollution Sources are administrative in nature and do not affect the stringency of the SIP. The revisions will provide a more efficient way to perform emissions sampling by incorporating by reference federally promulgated methods. A detailed discussion of the revision to Missouri’s SIP and was provided in EPA’s December 3, 2019, Federal Register document. See 84 FR 66096. III. Have the requirements for approval of a SIP revision been met? The State submission has met the public notice requirements for SIP submissions in accordance with 40 CFR 51.102. The submission also satisfied the completeness criteria of 40 CFR part 51, appendix V. The State provided public notice on this SIP revision from May 15, 2018 to August 2, 2018 and received eight comments. Based on the comments received the State made revisions to rule text in sections (21) (22) and (23) that incorporated by reference specific appendices and subparts. The State provided a second public notice on this SIP revision from April 15, 2019 to June 6, 2019 and received no comments. In addition, as explained above, the revision meets the substantive SIP requirements of the CAA, including section 110 and implementing regulations. IV. What action is the EPA taking? We are taking final action to approve revisions to Missouri’s SIP by approving the State’s request to revise 10 CSR 10– 6.030, Sampling Methods for Air Pollution Sources. V. Incorporation by Reference In this document, the EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, the EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of the Missouri Regulations described in the amendments to 40 CFR part 52 set forth below. The EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through www.regulations.gov and at the EPA Region 7 Office (please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this preamble for more information). E:\FR\FM\24JAR1.SGM 24JAR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 16 (Friday, January 24, 2020)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 4225-4229]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-00440]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT

24 CFR Part 51

[Docket No: FR-6054-F-02]
RIN 2506-AC45


Conforming the Acceptable Separation Distance (ASD) Standards for 
Residential Propane Tanks to Industry Standards

AGENCY: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and 
Development, HUD.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: This final rule reduces regulatory and cost burden on 
communities that may be restricted in their ability to site HUD-
assisted projects, by allowing HUD-assisted projects near stationary 
aboveground propane storage tanks with a capacity of 1,000 gallons or 
less if the storage tanks comply with National Fire Protection 
Association (NFPA) 58 (2017). Based on consideration of public 
comments, HUD is adopting this 1,000-gallon limit in lieu of the 250-
gallon limit contemplated in the proposed rule. This final rule 
incorporates by reference NFPA 58 (2017), a voluntary consensus 
standard for public safety that establishes safety standards used by 
the propane industry and operators regarding storage, handling, 
transportation, and use of propane.

DATES: Effective Date: February 24, 2020. The incorporation by 
reference of certain publications listed in the rule is approved by the 
Director of the Federal Register as of February 24, 2020.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Danielle Schopp, Director, Office of 
Environment and Energy, Office of Community Planning and Development, 
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW, 
Washington, DC 20410; telephone number 202-402-5226 (this is not a 
toll-free number). Persons with hearing or speech impairments may 
access this number through TTY by calling the Federal Relay Service at 
800-877-8339 (this is a toll-free number).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    On December 10, 2018, HUD published a rule in the Federal Register, 
at 83 FR 63457, which proposed expanding HUD's ability to approve 
assistance for projects sited near propane storage tanks (otherwise 
known as ``Liquified Petroleum Gas containers'' or ``LPG containers''). 
The rule proposed amending HUD regulations at 24 CFR part 51, subpart 
C, which establish the Acceptable Separation Distance (ASD) that must 
be kept between HUD-assisted projects and containers of hazardous 
substances, by creating an exception for aboveground propane storage 
tanks of a capacity of 250 gallons or less if the storage tank complies 
with NFPA 58 (2017), a voluntary consensus standard that establishes 
safety standards used by the propane industry and operators regarding 
storage, handling, transportation, and use of propane, as well as all 
underground storage tanks.
    HUD's proposed rule was intended to modernize outdated codified 
safety

[[Page 4226]]

standards. HUD's current standards, codified at 24 CFR part 51, subpart 
C, are based on the findings of studies conducted by the Department, in 
1975 and 1982.\1\ The effect of these standards is to prescribe the ASD 
of HUD-assisted projects from specific hazardous operations, unless 
appropriate mitigating measures are implemented. Substances deemed 
hazardous include petrochemical products, such as propane. HUD-assisted 
projects include the development, construction, rehabilitation, 
modernization, or conversion with HUD subsidy, grant assistance, loan, 
loan guarantee, or mortgage insurance of any project intended for 
residential, institutional, recreational, commercial, or industrial 
use.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Safety Consideration in Siting Housing Projects, prepared by 
Arthur D. Little Inc., 1975; and Urban Development Siting with 
Respect to Hazardous Commercial/Industrial Facilities, by Rolf 
Jensen and Associates Inc., 1982.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Mitigation measures can be costly and limit choices for siting a 
HUD-assisted project. HUD's experience has been that there are 
significant practical and economic difficulties in mitigating off-site 
residential propane tanks located on adjacent properties. HUD has 
recently provided waivers for approval of HUD-assisted sites that have 
propane tanks in compliance with NFPA 58 (2017) on the basis that such 
compliance mitigated any danger to HUD-assisted projects sited adjacent 
to the hazard.
    Based on HUD's experience, HUD issued its proposed rule to 
streamline and update its current rule.

II. Changes and Clarifications Made in This Final Rule

    This final rule follows publication of the December 10, 2018, 
proposed rule and takes into consideration the public comments received 
on the proposed rule. In response to public comment, a discussion of 
which is presented in the following section of this preamble, and in 
further consideration of issues addressed at the proposed rule stage, 
the Department is making changes, described below, in this final rule.

A. Propane Tanks of up to 1,000 Gallons Exempted From Hazard ASD 
Restrictions

    HUD received several comments requesting reconsideration of the 
250-gallon limit for aboveground propane tanks exempted from HUD's ASD 
requirements. After performing further analysis on common residential 
tank sizes and potential risks posed by larger tanks, HUD has 
determined that exempting tanks up to 1,000 gallons would increase the 
rule's effectiveness without posing additional risk. As such, the 
definition of ``hazard'' in Sec.  51.201 has been revised to exempt 
tanks up to 1,000 gallons. The justification for this change is 
described below.
1. Common Residential Tank Sizes
    Typical propane consumption and the range of typical tank sizes 
vary widely between warmer and cooler climates. An average-size modern 
home using high-efficiency propane heating equipment and other 
appliances in a warm climate region can expect to use 194 to 258 
gallons per year, while the same home in a cold climate region would 
typically use 991 to 1,844 gallons per year.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ Energy and Environmental Analysis of Propane Energy Pod 
Homes, Prepared for the Propane Education & Research Council, 2011.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The same variables that impact propane consumption naturally also 
impact the choice of propane tank sizing. In addition, the average 
customer, especially in a cold climate prefers to minimize the 
frequency of refueling to ensure that they don't run out given the high 
heating loads they experience in the winter. Propane prices also 
fluctuate with the market throughout the year and tend to be on the 
higher side during the heating season and lower in the summer. Larger 
tanks allow customers to buy larger quantities of propane during 
periods of lower prices resulting in better savings. They also save on 
delivery related fees by having fewer fill ups. The tank size thus 
becomes a cost controlling factor for the customer, and tank sizes up 
to 1,000 gallons are regularly used for residential purposes.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ See NFPA 58 LP-Gas Code Handbook (2017).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

2. Safety of 1,000-Gallon Propane Tanks
    The reliability of propane tanks has increased significantly over 
the past 30 years and studies suggest that the evolution of industry 
safety practices has reduced the probability of propane tank 
failure.\4\ Studies by the NFPA, documented in the rule's Regulatory 
Impact Analysis, show that propane is not a leading cause of fires or 
listed as a source of residential structure fires in the United States. 
Propane tanks are extremely durable. In a study performed by the U.S. 
Department of Defense and the Energy Research and Development 
Administration, these tanks sustained very little damage even from the 
energy of a simulated nuclear blast.\5\ This experiment and others 
conducted in the propane industry demonstrate that propane tank 
explosions are difficult and rare.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ See Ahrens, M. (2017), Ahrens, M. (2018), Flynn, J. (2010), 
and Hall. J.R. (2014).
    \5\ The Effects of Nuclear Weapons, Compiled and edited by 
Samuel Glasstone and Philip J. Dolan., 1977.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Furthermore, this rule does not remove all safe distance 
requirements for LPG containers sited near HUD-assisted projects. All 
tanks exempted from HUD's ASD requirements under this rule must be 
fully compliant with NFPA (2017) standards, including NFPA separation 
distance requirements. Tanks locations must meet a separation distance 
between the container and important buildings \6\ or line of adjoining 
property that can be built upon, in accordance with the NFPA 58. Tanks 
between 125 and 500 gallons must be at least 10 feet apart from 
important buildings or property lines of adjoining property that can be 
built upon, while tanks between 501 and 1,000 gallons must be at least 
25 feet apart. Under NFPA 58 and this rule's revision of 24 CFR part 
51, tanks under 125 gallons would not require a separation distance.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ According to the NFPA 58 LP-Gas Code Handbook, a building 
can be considered important for a number of reasons such as high 
replacement value, its human occupancy, or vital importance of 
contents to a business. A building with characteristics that hinder 
emergency responders' access and ability to safely apply water to a 
tank or act as an impediment to applying water should also be 
considered an important building.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For the reasons described above, HUD has determined that LPG 
containers with capacities of up to 1,000 gallons that comply with NFPA 
58 (2017) will no longer be subject to the hazard restrictions posed by 
24 CFR part 51. Since the separation distance imposed by NFPA 58 
compliance is sufficient to ensure the safety of HUD-assisted projects, 
increasing the size of tank covered by this exception will reduce 
regulatory and cost burden on even more projects and communities 
without any significant additional risk.

B. Other Changes and Clarifications

    One commenter stated that it was unclear whether the tank size 
referenced in Sec.  51.201 definition of ``hazard'' was to be measured 
in water gallon capacity or propane gallon capacity. As a result, HUD 
has amended the language of Sec.  51.201 to clarify that tanks are 
measured in water gallon capacity. This language was clarified in order 
to align the rule with language in NFPA 58 (which uses water capacity 
to determine ASD standards). The American Society of Mechanical 
Engineers, which certifies propane tanks, also rates tanks in terms of 
their water capacity.
    Additionally, a commenter found the language used to describe 
propane tanks (``Containers which are designed to hold

[[Page 4227]]

liquefied propane gas . . .'') confusing. To increase clarity and 
accuracy, HUD is amending the phrase to read: ``Containers which are 
used to hold liquefied petroleum gas.'' First, replacing ``designed'' 
with ``used'' more accurately describes the scope of the definition, 
since some containers that are not designed to hold LPG are used to 
hold it nonetheless, while still complying with NFPA safety 
requirements. Second, HUD is replacing ``liquified propane gas'' with 
``liquefied petroleum gas'' because the gas used in heating systems is 
sometimes comprised of not only propane, but butane as well. These 
changes will increase consistency between this final rule and NFPA 58 
(2017).

III. Discussion of Public Comments Received on December 10, 2018, 
Proposed Rule

    The public comment period for the proposed rule closed on February 
8, 2019. HUD received six public comments in response to the proposed 
rule. These comments were submitted by a nationally recognized fire 
safety codes and standards organization, the national trade group for 
the propane industry, a nonprofit affordable housing developer, and 
private citizens.
    None of the commenters opposed conforming the ASD standards for 
residential propane tanks to industry standards. Commenters were 
generally supportive of the proposed rule, but, as provided in the 
following section of this Preamble, they also recommended changes or 
clarifications, several of which are discussed above.
    Comment: How will this rule impact HUD-assisted projects sited near 
multiple propane tanks, or propane tanks stored near other gases.
    HUD Response: Under this final rule, LPG tanks of 1,000 gallons or 
less are not subject to ASD requirements, regardless of how many tanks 
are present, if they comply with NFPA code 58 (2017). The exclusion 
from the ASD requirement applies only to LPG tanks. If there are other 
gases stored in stationary aboveground containers, the ASD must be 
calculated for those nonpropane containers.
    Comment: HUD should not exempt all underground propane containers 
from hazard restrictions, but only those which comply with applicable 
Federal, State, or local safety standards, because improperly spaced 
underground containers can leak gas into underground structures.
    HUD Response: HUD is declining to implement this change in this 
final rule, as this rule is amending safety standards relating to fire 
and blast hazards, which do not take into consideration other issues 
such as vapor contamination. HUD performs environmental review of most 
projects, including multifamily housing and new construction, which 
captures information related to vapor contamination to document 
compliance with the standards at 24 CFR 50.3(i) and 58.5(i)(2), using 
investigative techniques including but not limited to ASTM Phase I and 
Phase II Environmental Site Assessment.\7\ Furthermore, this rule is 
conforming the relevant regulation with HUD's longstanding policy of 
considering underground tanks exempt from the ASD restrictions listed 
in 24 CFR 51 subpart C because they are shielded by the topography from 
posing fire or blast risks to HUD-assisted projects and, therefore, do 
not meet the definition of ``hazard'' at Sec.  51.201. This is also 
consistent with HUD's treatment of LPG pipelines in existing 
regulations, in which LPG pipelines are excluded from the definition of 
``hazard'' so long as they are either underground or comply with 
Federal, State, and local safety standards.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ HUD's environmental review regulations can be found at 24 
CFR parts 50, 51, 55, and 58.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Comment: HUD should update the FHA Single Family Housing Policy 
Handbook to indicate that FHA can assist in the purchase of properties 
with underground propane tanks.
    HUD Response: This final rule focuses on updates to the regulation 
at 24 CFR 51 subpart C, and updates to subregulatory guidance are 
beyond the scope of this rulemaking. Nevertheless, HUD agrees that the 
referenced guidance should reflect these revisions.
    Comment: The rule only incorporates NFPA 58 by reference for LPG 
containers 250 gallons or less which are exempt from hazard 
restrictions. HUD should incorporate NFPA 58 by reference for all LPG 
containers regardless of size in order to maintain a consistent 
approach to handling LPG as a hazard.
    HUD Response: As discussed above, in this final rule HUD is 
incorporating NFPA 58 (2017) by reference for LPG containers 1,000 
gallons or less that are exempt from hazard restrictions. Containers 
larger than 1,000 gallons will still be defined as ``hazards'' and will 
still need to comply with HUD's safety standards at 24 CFR part 51, 
subpart C. This rulemaking is intended to mitigate regulatory and cost 
burden related to residential propane tanks (which typically hold 1,000 
gallons or less) \8\ and is not intended to address commercial, 
industrial, or agricultural propane tanks (which typically hold more 
than 1,000 gallons).\9\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \8\ See NFPA 58 LP-Gas Code Handbook (2017).
    \9\ Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

IV. Incorporation by Reference

    This rule incorporates the following voluntary consensus standard 
for siting of HUD-assisted projects near aboveground propane storage 
tanks that hold up to 1000 gallons: NFPA 58 Liquefied Petroleum Gas 
Code (2017). The NFPA develops building, fire, and electrical safety 
codes and standards. Federal agencies frequently use these codes and 
standards as the basis for developing Federal regulations concerning 
safety. NFPA 58 (2017) provides industry benchmark and operational 
information and standards for safe propane storage, handling, 
transportation, and use. NFPA 58 (2017) mitigates risks and ensures 
safe installations, to prevent failures, leaks, and tampering that 
could lead to fires and explosions. The regulation cannot account for 
future editions of NFPA that do not yet exist. Therefore, if HUD wishes 
to revise the standard in the future to incorporate newer editions of 
NFPA 58 this would require further rulemaking.
    NFPA 58 (2017) is available online, via read-only access, at 
https://www.nfpa.org/codes-and-standards/all-codes-and-standards/list-of-codes-and-standards/detail?code=58. Members of the public may visit 
the link and create a username and password to view the free-access 
edition. The standard may also be obtained from the National Fire 
Protection Association at 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169, 
telephone number (800) 344-3555, fax number (800) 593-6372.

V. Findings and Certifications

Regulatory Review--Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    Under Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review), a 
determination must be made whether a regulatory action is significant 
and, therefore, subject to review by the Office of Management and 
Budget (OMB) in accordance with the requirements of the order. 
Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulations and Regulatory Review) 
directs executive agencies to analyze regulations that are ``outmoded, 
ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome, and to modify, 
streamline, expand, or repeal them in accordance with what has been 
learned.'' Executive Order 13563 also directs that, where relevant, 
feasible, and consistent with regulatory objectives, and to the extent 
permitted by law, agencies are to

[[Page 4228]]

identify and consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and 
maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public. HUD has 
examined the economic, budgetary, legal, and policy implications of 
this action and has determined that this final rule is a significant 
regulatory action under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 (but not 
an economically significant action). HUD has prepared a regulatory 
impact analysis that addresses the costs and benefits of the final 
rule. The analysis is available at Regulations.gov and is part of the 
docket file for this rule.

Executive Order 13771

    Executive Order 13771, entitled ``Reducing Regulation and 
Controlling Regulatory Costs,'' was issued on January 30, 2017. This 
final rule is an Executive Order 13771 deregulatory action. Details on 
the estimated cost savings of this rule can be found in the rule's 
economic analysis.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) 
generally requires an agency to conduct a regulatory flexibility 
analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking 
requirements, unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
Small entities include small businesses, small nonprofit organizations, 
and small governmental jurisdictions.
    This rule updates a codified regulation to reduce regulatory and 
cost burden on communities that may be restricted in their ability to 
site HUD-assisted projects because of the presence of stationary 
aboveground propane storage tanks that may be nearby. Specifically, the 
rule allows the siting of HUD-assisted projects near stationary 
aboveground propane storage tanks with a capacity of 1,000 gallons or 
less if the storage tank complies with NFPA Code 58 (2017). HUD has 
determined that the rule would result in the reduction of costly 
mitigation measures.
    Small entities affected by the rule include owner-occupied single 
family, small public housing authorities, and a limited number of 
multifamily projects. Notwithstanding, HUD has determined that the 
rule's impact will be to reduce administrative burdens and generate 
cost savings estimated to be from $200,000-$18,000,000 per year. Due to 
economies of scale and the cost of compliance with the existing rule, 
these reductions of administrative burden will provide relatively 
greater benefit to entities that are small. This rule would have 
minimal impact on small firms because they would not be required to 
modify current operational procedures. The rule will eliminate the need 
for costly waiver processes and mitigation costs on the part of these 
small entities. For example, as described in the Regulatory Impact 
Analysis, of 1200 small rental properties in Mississippi applying for 
disaster recovery assistance after Hurricane Katrina, 750 required 
additional compliance measures or a waiver under current 24 CFR part 51 
subpart C in order to be eligible for assistance. Removing such 
obstacles to assistance would have particularly beneficial impact for 
similarly situated small rental properties, and other small entities, 
that are assisted going forward. Similarly, as discussed in the 
Regulatory Impact Analysis, HUD's 2017 waiver for certain Community 
Development Block Grant and Home Investment Partnerships programs in 
Vermont included both residences and small businesses; specifically, 
restaurants. In waiving the requirements of the existing regulation as 
to these small businesses, HUD noted that in 2011 there were 1,346 
restaurants in Vermont using propane. These restaurants were affected 
by the cost or practicability of compliance with the existing rule, and 
these costs will be saved in future projects under this rule. 
Accordingly, the undersigned certifies that this rule will not have a 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

Environmental Impact

    A Finding of No Significant Impact with respect to the environment 
for this rule has been made in accordance with HUD regulations at 24 
CFR part 50, which implement section 102(2)(C) of the National 
Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)). The Finding of 
No Significant Impact is available for public inspection between 8 a.m. 
and 5 p.m., weekdays in the Regulations Division, Office of General 
Counsel, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th 
Street SW, Room 10276, Washington, DC 20410-5000. Due to security 
measures at the HUD Headquarters building, please schedule an 
appointment to review the Finding by calling the Regulations Division 
at (202) 708-3055 (this is not a toll-free number). Individuals with 
speech or hearing impairments may access this number via TTY by calling 
the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. The Finding of No 
Significant Impact will also be available for review in the docket for 
this rule on Regulations.gov.

Federalism Impact

    Executive Order 13132 (entitled ``Federalism'') prohibits, to the 
extent practicable and permitted by law, an agency from promulgating a 
regulation that has federalism implications and either imposes 
substantial direct compliance costs on State and local governments and 
is not required by statute, or preempts State law, unless the relevant 
requirements of section 6 of the Executive order are met. This rule 
does not have federalism implications and does not impose substantial 
direct compliance costs on State and local governments or preempt State 
law within the meaning of the Executive order.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 
1531-1538) (UMRA) establishes requirements for Federal agencies to 
assess the effects of their regulatory actions on State, local, and 
tribal governments and on the private sector. This rule would not 
impose any Federal mandates on any State, local, or tribal governments, 
or on the private sector, within the meaning of UMRA.

List of Subjects in 24 CFR Part 51

    Airports, Hazardous substances, Housing standards, Incorporation by 
reference, Noise control.

    Accordingly, for the reasons stated in the foregoing preamble, HUD 
amends 24 CFR part 51 as follows:

PART 51--ENVIRONMENTAL CRITERIA AND STANDARDS

0
1. The authority citation for 24 CFR part 51 subpart C continues to 
read as follows:

    Authority:  42 U.S.C. 3535(d), unless otherwise noted.


0
2. In Sec.  51.201, revise the definition of ``hazard'' to read as 
follows:


Sec.  51.201  Definitions.

* * * * *
    Hazard--means any stationary container which stores, handles, or 
processes hazardous substances of an explosive or fire prone nature. 
The term ``hazard'' does not include:
    (1) Pipelines for the transmission of hazardous substances, if such 
pipelines are located underground, or comply with applicable Federal, 
State and local safety standards;
    (2) Containers with a capacity of 100 gallons or less when they 
contain common liquid industrial fuels, such as gasoline, fuel oil, 
kerosene, and crude oil, since they generally would pose no

[[Page 4229]]

danger in terms of thermal radiation or blast overpressure to a 
project;
    (3) Facilities that are shielded from a proposed HUD-assisted 
project by the topography, because these topographic features 
effectively provide a mitigating measure already in place;
    (4) All underground containers; and
    (5) Containers used to hold liquefied petroleum gas with a 
volumetric capacity not to exceed 1,000 gallons water capacity, if they 
comply with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 58. NFPA 58, 
Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code, 2017 Edition, copyright 2016 is 
incorporated by reference into this section with the approval of the 
Director of the Federal Register, under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 
51. All approved material is available for inspection at HUD's Office 
of Environment and Energy, 202-402-5226, and is available from National 
Fire Protection Association, 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169, 
telephone number 800-344-3555, fax number 800-593-6372, www.nfpa.org. 
It is also available for inspection at the National Archives and 
Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 
this material at NARA, email [email protected] or visit 
www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html. Persons with 
hearing or speech impairments may access the numbers above through TTY 
by calling the Federal Relay Service, toll-free, at 800-877-8339.
* * * * *

    Dated: January 9, 2020.
David C. Woll, Jr.,
Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and 
Development.
[FR Doc. 2020-00440 Filed 1-23-20; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4210-67-P