Improving and Reforming Regulatory Enforcement and Adjudication, 5483-5484 [2020-01632]

Download as PDF khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 20 / Thursday, January 30, 2020 / Notices applicants and employees because of physical or mental disability and requires affirmative action to ensure that persons are treated without regard to disability. Section 503 applies to Federal contractors and subcontractors with contracts in excess of $15,000.1 VEVRAA prohibits employment discrimination against protected veterans and requires affirmative action to ensure that persons are treated without regard to their status as a protected veteran. VEVRAA applies to Federal contractors and subcontractors with contracts of $150,000 or more.1 This information collection is subject to the PRA. A Federal agency generally cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and the public is generally not required to respond to an information collection, unless the OMB under the PRA approves it and displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. In addition, notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no person shall generally be subject to penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that does not display a valid Control Number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and 1320.6. The DOL obtains OMB approval for this information collection under Control Number 1250– 0004. OMB authorization for an ICR cannot be for more than three (3) years without renewal, and the current approval for this collection is scheduled to expire on January 31, 2020. The DOL seeks to extend PRA authorization for this information collection for three (3) more years, without any change to existing requirements. The DOL notes that existing information collection requirements submitted to the OMB receive a month-to-month extension while they undergo review. For additional substantive information about this ICR, see the related notice published in the Federal Register on October 3, 2019 (84 FR 52897). Interested parties are encouraged to send comments to the OMB, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the address shown in the ADDRESSES section within thirty-(30) days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register In order to help ensure appropriate consideration, comments should mention OMB Control Number 1250–0004. The OMB is particularly interested in comments that: • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the 1 Effective October 1, 2015, the coverage threshold under VEVRAA increased from $100,000 to $150,000, in accordance with the inflationary adjustment requirements in 41 U.S.C. 1908. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Jan 29, 2020 Jkt 250001 functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility: • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used. • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and • 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, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. Agency: DOL–OFCCP. Title of Collection: Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act, as Amended. OMB Control Number: 1250–0004. Affected Public: Private Sector: Businesses or other for-profits. Total Estimated Number of Respondents: 42,532,659. Total Estimated Number of Responses: 42,532,659. Total Estimated Annual Time Burden: 5,377,348 hours. Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: $763,467. Authority: 44 U.S.C. 3507(a)(1)(D). Dated: January 23, 2020. Frederick Licari, Departmental Clearance Officer. [FR Doc. 2020–01617 Filed 1–29–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–CM–P OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET Improving and Reforming Regulatory Enforcement and Adjudication Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Executive Office of the President. ACTION: Request for information: Improving and/or reforming regulatory enforcement and adjudication. AGENCY: In furtherance of the policy on Promoting the Rule of Law Through Transparency and Fairness in Civil Administrative Enforcement and Adjudication, the Office of Management and Budget invites the public to identify additional reforms that will ensure adequate due process in regulatory enforcement and adjudication. DATES: Comments are due on or before March 16, 2020. ADDRESSES: Interested parties should submit comments, identified by docket SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00117 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 5483 number OMB–2019–0006, before the comment closing date to www.regulations.gov. Protecting Americans against the unjust or arbitrary exercise of government power forms a cornerstone of the United States’ constitutional structure. The presumption of innocence, adjudication by a neutral arbiter, fair and speedy proceedings, and the prohibition of double jeopardy, are some of the timehonored protections that constitute the rule of law in America. The growth of administrative enforcement and adjudication over the last several decades has not always been accompanied by commensurate growth of protections to ensure just and reasonable process. Because many citizens’ sole or principal interaction with the federal government is with a federal agency, it is of the utmost importance that administrative enforcement and adjudication operate subject to requirements that ensure they are fair, speedy, accurate, transparent, and respectful of the rights of Americans. This Administration continues to evaluate a full range of options to make significant reforms in the context of administrative enforcement and adjudication. OMB invites public comment to promote an informed consideration of additional reforms. In particular, OMB solicits input on regulatory reforms that will better safeguard due process in the regulatory enforcement and adjudication settings (i.e., non- Article III adjudications). The Administration recognizes that procedural protections vary considerably by Department and/or agency, sub-agency, etc. Adjudications pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act’s section 554 (i.e., ‘‘formal’’ adjudications) require more robust procedural protections. See 5 U.S.C 554, 556, and 557. Other adjudications (i.e., ‘‘informal’’ adjudications) tend to enjoy more procedural flexibility. No matter the diversity of protections and/or types of proceedings, the Administration maintains an interest in overarching procedural reform. Put differently, the Administration requests public input on procedural reforms to both formal and informal adjudications and preadjudication enforcement protection(s). This request for information seeks ideas that will ensure each and every American enjoys adequate protections in regulatory enforcements and adjudications. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\30JAN1.SGM 30JAN1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES 5484 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 20 / Thursday, January 30, 2020 / Notices Among the topics of interest, OMB invites feedback on the following queries: • Prior to the initiation of an adjudication, what would ensure a speedy and/or fair investigation? What reform(s) would avoid a prolonged investigation? Should investigated parties have an opportunity to require an agency to ‘‘show cause’’ to continue an investigation? • When do multiple agencies investigate the same (or related) conduct and then force Americans to contest liability in different proceedings across multiple agencies? What reforms would encourage agencies to adjudicate related conduct in a single proceeding before a single adjudicator? • Would applying the principle of res judicata in the regulatory context reduce duplicative proceedings? How would agencies effectively apply res judicata? • In the regulatory/civil context, when does an American have to prove an absence of legal liability? Put differently, need an American prove innocence in regulatory proceeding(s)? What reform(s) would ensure an American never has to prove the absence of liability? To the extent permissible, should the Administration address burdens of persuasion and/or production in regulatory proceedings? Or should the scope of this reform focus strictly on an initial presumption of innocence? • What evidentiary rules apply in regulatory proceedings to guard against hearsay and/or weigh reliability and relevance? Would the application of some of the Federal Rules of Evidence create a fairer evidentiary framework, and if so, which Rules? • Should agencies be required to produce all evidence favorable to the respondent? What rules and/or procedures would ensure the expedient production of all exculpatory evidence? • Do adjudicators sometimes lack independence from the enforcement arm of the agency? What reform(s) would adequately separate functions and guarantee an adjudicator’s independence? • Do agencies provide enough transparency regarding penalties and fines? Are penalties generally fair and proportionate to the infractions for which they are assessed? What reform(s) would ensure consistency and transparency regarding regulatory penalties for a particular agency or the federal government as a whole? • When do regulatory investigations and/or adjudications coerce Americans into resolutions/settlements? What safeguards would systemically prevent unfair and/or coercive resolutions? VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:56 Jan 29, 2020 Jkt 250001 • Are agencies and agency staff accountable to the public in the context of enforcement and adjudications? If not, how can agencies create greater accountability? • Are there certain types of proceedings that, due to exigency or other causes, warrant fewer procedural protections than others? For each of the above queries, OMB requests specific, concrete examples of current due process shortfalls and concrete reform proposals to ensure adequate due process. Abstract, general principles will do little to advance actionable reform. Instructions for Written Responses Interested parties should provide written responses to the questions outlined in the supplementary information section of this Federal Register document. Submissions are due 45 days from publication of this document through www.regulations.gov and should be identified by docket number OMB–2019–0006. Please include the below in your response, limiting this portion of your response to one page: • The name of the individual(s) and/ or organization responding. Anonymous responses will also be accepted. • A brief description of the responding individual(s) or organization’s mission and/or areas of expertise, if the responder feels appropriate. • A contact for questions or other follow-up on your response if desired. Comments submitted in response to this document are subject to FOIA. OMB may also make all comments available to the public. For this reason, please do not include in your comments information of a confidential nature, such as sensitive personal information or proprietary information. If you send an email comment, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the internet. Please note that responses to this public comment request containing any routine notice about the confidentiality of the communication will be treated as public comments that may be made available to the public notwithstanding the inclusion of the routine notice. Russell T. Vought, Acting Director, OMB. [FR Doc. 2020–01632 Filed 1–29–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3110–01–P PO 00000 Frm 00118 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice (20–006)] Notice of Intent To Grant Partially Exclusive License National Aeronautics and Space Administration. ACTION: Notice of intent to grant partially exclusive patent license. AGENCY: NASA hereby gives notice of its intent to grant a partially exclusive patent license in the United States to practice the inventions described and claimed in U.S. Patent No. 8,167,204 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Damage Location Sensing System,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17593–1; U.S. Patent No. 7,086,593 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Magnetic Field Response Measurement Acquisition System,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–16908–1; U.S. Patent No. 7,159,774 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Magnetic Field Response Measurement Acquisition System,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17280–1; U.S. Patent No. 8,430,327 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Sensing System Using Open-Circuit, ElectricallyConductive Spiral-Trace Sensor,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17294–1; U.S. Patent No. 8,042,739 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Tamper Detection Sensor and Sensing System,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17444–1; U.S. Patent No. 7,814,786 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Sensing System for Non-Invasive Monitoring of Attributes of Contents in a Container,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17488–1; U.S. Patent No. 8,673,649 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Chemical Sensor and Sensing Method for Use Therewith,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17579–1; U.S. Patent No. 9,329,149 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Chemical Sensor and Sensing Method for Use Therewith,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17579–2; U.S. Patent No. 9,733,203 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Chemical Sensing Method,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17579–3; U.S. Patent No. 8,179,203 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Wireless Electrical Device Using Open-Circuit Elements Having No Electrical Connections,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–17711–1; and U.S. Patent No. 10,193,228 B2 for an invention entitled ‘‘Antenna for Near Field Sensing and Far Field Transceiving,’’ NASA Case Number LAR–18400–1, to Gyra Systems, Inc., having its principal place of business in La Mesa, CA. The fields of use may be limited to package monitoring quality sensors to detect changes in product quality and authenticity, such as pharmaceutical, food, beverage, tobacco, and cosmetics SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\30JAN1.SGM 30JAN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 20 (Thursday, January 30, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 5483-5484]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-01632]


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OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET


Improving and Reforming Regulatory Enforcement and Adjudication

AGENCY: Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Executive Office of the 
President.

ACTION: Request for information: Improving and/or reforming regulatory 
enforcement and adjudication.

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

SUMMARY: In furtherance of the policy on Promoting the Rule of Law 
Through Transparency and Fairness in Civil Administrative Enforcement 
and Adjudication, the Office of Management and Budget invites the 
public to identify additional reforms that will ensure adequate due 
process in regulatory enforcement and adjudication.

DATES: Comments are due on or before March 16, 2020.

ADDRESSES: Interested parties should submit comments, identified by 
docket number OMB-2019-0006, before the comment closing date to 
www.regulations.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Protecting Americans against the unjust or 
arbitrary exercise of government power forms a cornerstone of the 
United States' constitutional structure. The presumption of innocence, 
adjudication by a neutral arbiter, fair and speedy proceedings, and the 
prohibition of double jeopardy, are some of the time-honored 
protections that constitute the rule of law in America.
    The growth of administrative enforcement and adjudication over the 
last several decades has not always been accompanied by commensurate 
growth of protections to ensure just and reasonable process. Because 
many citizens' sole or principal interaction with the federal 
government is with a federal agency, it is of the utmost importance 
that administrative enforcement and adjudication operate subject to 
requirements that ensure they are fair, speedy, accurate, transparent, 
and respectful of the rights of Americans.
    This Administration continues to evaluate a full range of options 
to make significant reforms in the context of administrative 
enforcement and adjudication. OMB invites public comment to promote an 
informed consideration of additional reforms. In particular, OMB 
solicits input on regulatory reforms that will better safeguard due 
process in the regulatory enforcement and adjudication settings (i.e., 
non- Article III adjudications).
    The Administration recognizes that procedural protections vary 
considerably by Department and/or agency, sub-agency, etc. 
Adjudications pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act's section 
554 (i.e., ``formal'' adjudications) require more robust procedural 
protections. See 5 U.S.C 554, 556, and 557. Other adjudications (i.e., 
``informal'' adjudications) tend to enjoy more procedural flexibility. 
No matter the diversity of protections and/or types of proceedings, the 
Administration maintains an interest in overarching procedural reform. 
Put differently, the Administration requests public input on procedural 
reforms to both formal and informal adjudications and pre-adjudication 
enforcement protection(s). This request for information seeks ideas 
that will ensure each and every American enjoys adequate protections in 
regulatory enforcements and adjudications.

[[Page 5484]]

    Among the topics of interest, OMB invites feedback on the following 
queries:
     Prior to the initiation of an adjudication, what would 
ensure a speedy and/or fair investigation? What reform(s) would avoid a 
prolonged investigation? Should investigated parties have an 
opportunity to require an agency to ``show cause'' to continue an 
investigation?
     When do multiple agencies investigate the same (or 
related) conduct and then force Americans to contest liability in 
different proceedings across multiple agencies? What reforms would 
encourage agencies to adjudicate related conduct in a single proceeding 
before a single adjudicator?
     Would applying the principle of res judicata in the 
regulatory context reduce duplicative proceedings? How would agencies 
effectively apply res judicata?
     In the regulatory/civil context, when does an American 
have to prove an absence of legal liability? Put differently, need an 
American prove innocence in regulatory proceeding(s)? What reform(s) 
would ensure an American never has to prove the absence of liability? 
To the extent permissible, should the Administration address burdens of 
persuasion and/or production in regulatory proceedings? Or should the 
scope of this reform focus strictly on an initial presumption of 
innocence?
     What evidentiary rules apply in regulatory proceedings to 
guard against hearsay and/or weigh reliability and relevance? Would the 
application of some of the Federal Rules of Evidence create a fairer 
evidentiary framework, and if so, which Rules?
     Should agencies be required to produce all evidence 
favorable to the respondent? What rules and/or procedures would ensure 
the expedient production of all exculpatory evidence?
     Do adjudicators sometimes lack independence from the 
enforcement arm of the agency? What reform(s) would adequately separate 
functions and guarantee an adjudicator's independence?
     Do agencies provide enough transparency regarding 
penalties and fines? Are penalties generally fair and proportionate to 
the infractions for which they are assessed? What reform(s) would 
ensure consistency and transparency regarding regulatory penalties for 
a particular agency or the federal government as a whole?
     When do regulatory investigations and/or adjudications 
coerce Americans into resolutions/settlements? What safeguards would 
systemically prevent unfair and/or coercive resolutions?
     Are agencies and agency staff accountable to the public in 
the context of enforcement and adjudications? If not, how can agencies 
create greater accountability?
     Are there certain types of proceedings that, due to 
exigency or other causes, warrant fewer procedural protections than 
others?
    For each of the above queries, OMB requests specific, concrete 
examples of current due process shortfalls and concrete reform 
proposals to ensure adequate due process. Abstract, general principles 
will do little to advance actionable reform.

Instructions for Written Responses

    Interested parties should provide written responses to the 
questions outlined in the supplementary information section of this 
Federal Register document. Submissions are due 45 days from publication 
of this document through www.regulations.gov and should be identified 
by docket number OMB-2019-0006.
    Please include the below in your response, limiting this portion of 
your response to one page:
     The name of the individual(s) and/or organization 
responding. Anonymous responses will also be accepted.
     A brief description of the responding individual(s) or 
organization's mission and/or areas of expertise, if the responder 
feels appropriate.
     A contact for questions or other follow-up on your 
response if desired.
    Comments submitted in response to this document are subject to 
FOIA. OMB may also make all comments available to the public. For this 
reason, please do not include in your comments information of a 
confidential nature, such as sensitive personal information or 
proprietary information. If you send an email comment, your email 
address will be automatically captured and included as part of the 
comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the 
internet. Please note that responses to this public comment request 
containing any routine notice about the confidentiality of the 
communication will be treated as public comments that may be made 
available to the public notwithstanding the inclusion of the routine 
notice.

Russell T. Vought,
Acting Director, OMB.
[FR Doc. 2020-01632 Filed 1-29-20; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3110-01-P