Notice of Investigation and Record Requests, 37083-37086 [2020-13195]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 119 / Friday, June 19, 2020 / Notices khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES LBJ, Room 6W–208D, Washington, DC 20202–4537. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Rebecca Walawender, 202–245–7399. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of Education (ED), in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)), provides the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. This helps the Department assess the impact of its information collection requirements and minimize the public’s reporting burden. It also helps the public understand the Department’s information collection requirements and provide the requested data in the desired format. ED is soliciting comments on the proposed information collection request (ICR) that is described below. The Department of Education is especially interested in public comment addressing the following issues: (1) Is this collection necessary to the proper functions of the Department; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the Department enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the Department minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology. Please note that written comments received in response to this notice will be considered public records. Title of Collection: State Lead Agency Record Keeping and Reporting Requirements under Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. OMB Control Number: 1820–0682. Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection. Respondents/Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments. Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 56. Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 4,268. Abstract: This collection has been created to reflect the requirements VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:17 Jun 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 under Part C of IDEA and the Part C regulations that require State lead agencies (LAs) to collect and maintain information or data and, in some cases, report information or data to other public agencies or to the public. However, such information or data are not required to be reported to the Secretary. These required collections are consolidated into 1820–0682. Dated: June 15, 2020. Kate Mullan, PRA Coordinator, Strategic Collections and Clearance Governance and Strategy Division, Office of Chief Data Officer. [FR Doc. 2020–13199 Filed 6–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Notice of Investigation and Record Requests Office of the General Counsel, Department of Education. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Department publishes a letter, dated May 27, 2020, notifying Case Western Reserve University of an investigation related to Case Western Reserve University’s reports of defined gifts and contracts, including restricted and conditional gifts or contracts, from or with a statutorily defined foreign source. SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Patrick Shaheen, U.S. Department of Education, Office of the General Counsel, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Room 6E300, Washington, DC 20202. Telephone: (202) 453–6339. Email: Patrick.Shaheen@ed.gov. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service, toll free, at 1–800–877–8339. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department publishes this letter, dated May 27, 2020, notifying Case Western Reserve University of an investigation related to Case Western Reserve University’s reports of defined gifts and contracts, including restricted and conditional gifts or contracts, from or with a statutorily defined foreign source. The letter to Case Western PO 00000 Frm 00024 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 37083 Reserve University is in the Appendix of this notice. Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) on request to the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. You may access the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations at www.govinfo.gov. At this site you can view this document, as well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal Register, in text or Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site. You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department. Reed D. Rubinstein, Principal Deputy General Counsel delegated the authority to perform the functions and duties of the General Counsel. Appendix—Letter to Case Western Reserve University May 27, 2020 Barbara R. Snyder, President, Office of the President, Adelbert Hall 216, 10900 Euclid Avenue, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106–7001 Re: Notice of 20 U.S.C. 1011f Investigation and Record Request/Case Western Reserve University Dear President Snyder: Section 117 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1011f) requires institutions of higher education (IHEs), including Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), to report all gifts, contracts, and/or restricted and conditional gifts or contracts from or with a foreign source to the U.S. Department of Education (‘‘Department’’). These reports are posted at https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/ about/data-center/school/foreign-gifts. E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1 37084 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 119 / Friday, June 19, 2020 / Notices CWRU is a significant recipient of American taxpayer dollars, including more than $412,201,774 in NIH awards from 2018– 2020.1 Notably, CWRU’s School of Medicine is currently one of the top 20 U.S. medical school NIH grant recipients.2 On May 13, 2020, Dr. Qing Wang was arrested and charged by federal criminal complaint with false claims and wire fraud relating to more than $3.6 million in federal grant funding that he and his research group at CWRU’s Cleveland Clinic Foundation (CCF) received from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). First joining CCF in 1997, Dr. Wang was a prominent researcher (professor of molecular medicine) at CCF until a recent NIH and Department of Justice investigation 3 revealed his concurrent position as Dean of the College of Life Sciences and Technology at Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST) in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and his participation in the PRC’s Thousand Talent’s Program (TTP) (an ongoing subterfuge of the PRC to recruit individuals with access to foreign technology and intellectual property). See https:// www.justice.gov/opa/pr/former-clevelandclinic-employee-and-chinese-thousandtalents-participant-arrested-wire-fraud. DOJ’s investigation found that at the same time Dr. Wang was applying for and receiving NIH grants in his capacity as faculty at CCF, he also received undisclosed funding from the PRC’s National Natural Science Foundation of China. See https:// www.healthleadersmedia.com/ex-clevelandclinic-researcher-arrested-charged-wirefraud. In his TTP recruiting role, the PRC paid for Dr. Wang’s travel to China and a three-bedroom apartment on the HUST campus while Dr. Wang secured PRC funds for ‘‘recruits’’ at Harvard Medical School, the University of California, and the University of Texas (pursuant to Dr. Wang’s efforts on behalf of the PRC, those recruits received between $200,000 and $300,000 in financial compensation).4 CWRU has an ‘‘Office of Global Strategy’’ which has published a ‘‘Plan for Internationalization’’ which includes two phases for transitioning CWRU to a massive international presence and creating ‘‘Major International Partnerships.’’ 5 CWRU’s plan khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES 1 See https://www.report.nih.gov/award/ index.cfm?ot=MS&fy=2020&state=&ic=&fm=& orgid=218601&distr=&rfa=&om=n&pid=& view=state, https://www.report.nih.gov/award/ index.cfm?ot =MS&fy=2019&state=&ic=&fm=&orgid=218601& distr=&rfa=&om=n&pid=&view=state, https:// www.report.nih.gov/award/index.cfm?ot =MS&fy=2018&state=&ic=&fm=&orgid=218601& distr=&rfa=&om=n&pid=&view=state. 2 See https://case.edu/medicine/about/newsroom/ our-latest-news/school-medicine-soars-top-20ranking-nih-funding-2019. 3 Dr. Wang, while a faculty member at CCF, is alleged to have engaged in a pervasive pattern of fraud by deliberately failing to disclose his PRC funding and positions which overlapped with disclosure obligations to the NIH as part of the grant application process. See https:// www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/doj-escalateschinese-thousand-talents-crackdown-with-arrest-ofcleveland-clinic-researcher. 4 See id. 5 See https://case.edu/international/globalstrategy/major-international-partnerships. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:17 Jun 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 for international operations appears to be well underway. In fact, CWRU published that it has ‘‘200 international agreements in more than 40 different countries.’’ See https:// case.edu/international/global-strategy/majorinternational-partnerships. Some of CWRU’s international efforts include recruiting students from the PRC and setting up partnerships in the PRC.6 In an August 2018 interview with the PRC’s state-run news agency, Xinhua, you indicated that CWRU has ‘‘been very fortunate to have a lot of help as we forge partnerships in China.’’ Xinhua reported that while ‘‘CWRU does not have any immediate plans to open a campus in China . . . it has been working on many joint research projects, and faculty and student exchanges [sic] programs with some of the universities in China.’’ See https:// en.people.cn/n3/2018/0827/c900009494467.html. CWRU’s School of Dental Medicine, ‘‘in a move to expand its international presence and influence . . . signed a six-year agreement to train junior faculty from Qassim University’’ in Saudi Arabia in 2016. See https:// thedaily.case.edu/dental-school-strikesagreement-to-train-faculty-of-saudi-arabianuniversity/. A similar agreement was also signed with an Egyptian university. See https://case.edu/think/spring2016/ dentalschool-internationalimpact.html#.XsWVqWi6OUk. CWRU’s School of Law, pursuant to an agreement with Saudi Arabia’s Naif Arab University for Security Sciences (NAUSS), now offers a Master of Arts in Financial Integrity degree program in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. See https:// case.edu/international/global-strategy/majorinternational-partnerships. Despite CWRU’s very extensive entanglement with foreign sources here in the U.S. and abroad, a review of the Department’s records reveals significant disclosure deficiencies. Until January 2020, CWRU failed to make a single foreign source disclosure to the Department over a more than 12-year period (since January 2, 2008). During the past five months, CWRU has retroactively filed disclosure reports indicating receipt of over $53 million in qualifying foreign source gifts and contracts for the period January 2013 through the present. CWRU now reports only one qualifying foreign source transaction during the entire period from January 1, 2008, through January 13, 2013. The Department views CWRU’s reports as untimely and incomplete. The foreign source reporting obligation provides critical transparency to American taxpayers and policymakers. Failure to timely provide accurate disclosures could result in: (a) Unintentional transfers of critical research data with multiple applications to hostile foreign entities, (b) loss of public trust in university research enterprises, (c) diversions of proprietary and pre-publication research data to foreign entities, and (d) inaccurately informed decisions by policy makers about the use of taxpayer funding. 6 See ‘‘The China-to-Case Western Reserve University Pipeline is Flowing at Full Speed.’’ https://www.crainscleveland.com/scott-suttell-blog/ china-case-western-reserve-university-pipelineflowing-full-speed. PO 00000 Frm 00025 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 The PRC has been clear about its intent to acquire high-level scientific foreign talent and knowledge in furtherance of China’s high-priority scientific development, national security, and economic prosperity through its ‘‘Chinese Talent Programs’’ (CTP) and other initiatives, both lawful and illicit. One such program, the TTP, involves the PRC and its agencies and agents offering salaries, research funding, laboratory space, honorary titles, and other incentives in exchange for the commitment of researchers in transmitting and sharing highly-specialized research and knowledge with the PRC. It is the TTP in which CWRU’s Dr. Wang was a recruiter. Multiple federal agencies, including the NIH, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and Department of Energy (DOE), have publicly warned about the potential damage to American national security interests presented by CTPs.7 Section 117(f), 20 U.S.C. 1011f(f), provides that whenever it appears an institution has failed to comply with the law, the Secretary of Education may request the Attorney General commence an enforcement action to compel compliance and to recover the full costs to the United States of obtaining compliance, including all associated costs of investigation and enforcement. To meet the Department’s statutory duty to verify compliance prior to any potential referral for enforcement action by the Attorney General, the Department is continuing its administrative investigation of CWRU and requests that you produce the following within forty-five (45) calendar days: 1. All CWRU records of, regarding, or referencing gifts, contracts, and/or restricted or conditional gifts or contracts from or with a foreign source or foreign sources to CWRU. This includes, but is not limited to, true copies of qualifying pledges, donations, contributions, contracts, and/or agreements. Our request includes all supporting and related communications and metadata regarding these records. The time frame for this request is January 1, 2008, through the present. 2. A list of all gifts, contracts, and/or restricted or conditional gifts or contracts 7 NIH has clearly and repeatedly warned of the insidious threat of TTP to American research institutions, including colleges and universities. See https://nihrecord.nih.gov/2019/10/04/nihinvestigates-foreign-influence-us-granteeinstitutions, and https://www.sciencemag.org/news/ 2018/08/nih-investigating-whether-us-scientists-aresharing-ideas-foreign-governments. The NIH also informed NIH grantees, of which CWRU is one, of the ongoing threat to biomedical research from foreign sources and the obligation of universities to timely report funding by foreign entities. The FBI has, likewise, warned of the TTP’s threat to American security interests through research developed by taxpayer-funded American universities. See https://www.fbi.gov/news/ testimony/securing-the-us-research-enterprise-fromchinas-talent-recruitment-plans-111919; https:// www.hsgac.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Brown%20 Testimony.pdf. The Department of Energy, similarly, has warned of and acted to block TTPbased efforts to access technology critical to the security of the United States. See https:// www.directives.doe.gov/directives-documents/400series/0486.1-border/@@images/file; https:// phys.org/news/2019-06-energy-dept-blocks-chinathousand.html. E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 119 / Friday, June 19, 2020 / Notices from or with a foreign source that were not contemporaneously reported to the Department by CWRU between January 1, 2008 and the present. For each such gift, contract, and/or restricted or conditional gift or contract, please (a) list the name and address of the foreign source; (b) list the CWRU person(s) who solicited, negotiated, or benefited from each such gift, contract, and/ or conditional gift or contract; and (c) explain in a detailed narrative why CWRU failed to lawfully disclose the gift, contract, and/or conditional gift or contract. 3. All records of, regarding, or referencing gifts, contracts, and/or restricted or conditional gifts or contracts from or with: (i) The government of the PRC and/or its agencies, departments, agents, employees and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or elsewhere); the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or elsewhere); the People’s Liberation Army and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or elsewhere); Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., Huawei Technologies USA, Inc., ZTE Corp and/or their agents, employees, subsidiaries, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or elsewhere); and any China-based university or educational entity, and/or their agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or elsewhere). (ii) The government of Saudi Arabia and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Saudi Arabia, the United States, or elsewhere); and any Saudi Arabian university or educational entity and/ or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Saudi Arabia, the United States, or elsewhere). (iii) The government of Egypt, its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Egypt, the United States, or elsewhere); and any Egyptian university or educational entity and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Egypt, the United States, or elsewhere). (iv) The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Iran, the United States, or elsewhere); the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Iran, the United States, or elsewhere); any Iranian foundation (e.g. the ‘‘Foundation for the Oppressed’’), corporation, or legal entity and/or its agents, employees, subsidiaries, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Iran, the United States, or elsewhere); and any Iranian university or educational entity and/ or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Iran, the United States, or elsewhere). For each such gift, contract, and/or restricted or conditional gift or contract, specify all CWRU person(s) (e.g. principal investigator, student, faculty member, employee, foundation, department) who were the object or beneficiaries thereof. The time frame for this request is January 1, 2008, through the present. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:17 Jun 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 4. A complete list of any current or former CWRU faculty and staff, whether paid or unpaid, (including full and part time employees and contractors) involved in Chinese talent-recruitment and related programs (including TTP) from January 1, 2008, through the present. Provided contact information should include names, position(s) held, email addresses, mailing addresses, and phone numbers. 5. Identification of CWRU administrators or other personnel with responsibility for and/or oversight of faculty and staff involved in Chinese talent-recruitment programs (including TTP) from January 1, 2008, through the present. Provided contact information should include names, specific responsibilities, position(s) held, email addresses, mailing addresses, and phone numbers. 6. Identification of all known talent recruitment agencies, agents, and/or representatives who facilitated and/or supervised CWRU faculty and/or staff who were engaged in Chinese talent-recruitment programs (including TTP) from January 1, 2008, through the present. Provided contact information should include names, titles, apparent functions, email addresses, mailing addresses, and phone numbers. 7. All records of, regarding, or referencing communications concerning Chinese talentrecruitment programs (including TTP) and/or the involvement of CWRU faculty, staff, and students in Chinese talent-recruitment programs, from January 1, 2008, through the present. 8. All documents, including all written records, agreements, contracts, and modifications of contracts, evidencing agreements or consideration of agreements between CWRU, its faculty, staff, and administrators, and Chinese talentrecruitment program (including TTP) agencies or agents. 9. All records of CWRU’s compliance with U.S. government requirements under Executive Order 13224 and related legal authorities, and under all relevant U.S. Department of the Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) laws, regulations, and guidance related, inter alia, to Iran. The Department requests that CWRU’s production of records in response to this request utilize the following procedures: • Searches for records in electronic form should include searches of all relevant mobile devices, hard drives, network drives, offline electronic folders, thumb drives, removable drives, records stored in the cloud, and archive files, including, but not limited to, backup tapes. Do not time stamp or modify the content, the create date, or the last date modified of any record and do not scrub any metadata. • All email searches should be conducted by the agency’s information technology department, or its equivalent, and not by the individuals whose records are being searched. Please provide the name and contact information of the individual(s) who conducted the search, as well as an explanation of how the search was conducted. • To the extent practicable, please produce all records in a searchable electronic format PO 00000 Frm 00026 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 37085 and not hardcopies. Electronic records should be produced in native format. For emails, please place responses in one .pst file per employee. All other loose electronic files should be produced in their native format. To the extent practicable, all files should be produced in a manner that facilitates quick and accurate custodial assignment. Should CWRU have any questions about the method or format of production please contact the undersigned. As used in this Notice of Investigation and Information Request: ‘‘Agencies’’ include any organizations or entities providing services or performing functions or tasks on behalf of another organization, entity, or individual. ‘‘Agent’’ has its plain and ordinary meaning, indicating that a person, organization, or entity, is acting on behalf of another person, organization, or entity, whether that agency is disclosed or undisclosed. ‘‘Contract’’ has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(1). ‘‘Faculty’’ refers to all teaching positions at the university (including professors of all ranks, teachers, lecturers, and/or researchers whether in a classroom, laboratory, or other educational environment—whether physically or electronically present). ‘‘Foreign source’’ has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(2). ‘‘Gift’’ has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(3). ‘‘Institution’’ has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(4) and for the purposes of this request includes CWRU, its employees, tenured faculty, non-tenured faculty and lecturers, researchers, fellows, graduate students, and all affiliated entities operating substantially under its control or for its benefit (e.g., centers, schools, boards, foundations, research facilities, laboratories, branches, partnerships, or non-profit organizations). ‘‘Record’’ means all recorded information, regardless of form or characteristics, made or received, and including metadata, such as email and other electronic communication, word processing documents, PDF documents, animations (including PowerPointTM and other similar programs) spreadsheets, databases, calendars, telephone logs, contact manager information, internet usage files, network access information, writings, drawings, graphs, charts, photographs, sound recordings, images, financial statements, checks, wire transfers, accounts, ledgers, facsimiles, texts, animations, voicemail files, data generated by calendaring, task management and personal information management (PIM) software (such as Microsoft Outlook), data created with the use of personal data assistants (PDAs), data created with the use of document management software, data created with the use of paper and electronic mail logging and routing software, and other data or data compilations, stored in any medium from which information can be obtained either directly or, if necessary, after translation by the responding party into a reasonably usable form. The term ‘‘recorded information’’ also includes all traditional forms of records, regardless of physical form or characteristics. E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1 37086 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 119 / Friday, June 19, 2020 / Notices ‘‘Restricted or conditional gift or contract’’ has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(5). ‘‘Staff’’ refers to all members of the university involved in administration of the university and its obligations and commitments (including deans of all ranks, administration officials, and support personnel). If CWRU asserts attorney-client or attorneywork product privilege for a given record, then it must prepare and submit a privilege log expressly identifying each such record and describing it so the Department may assess the claim’s validity. Please note that no other privileges apply here. CWRU’s record and data preservation obligations are outlined at Exhibit A. The Department recognizes that the impact of the Coronavirus on all IHE operations is profound and ongoing. Nonetheless, the possible national security implications of undisclosed gifts, contracts, and/or restricted and conditional gifts or contracts from or with foreign sources is a critical matter and CWRU’s statutory reporting obligation is long-standing. Therefore, your timely response to this Notice of Investigation and Record Request is essential. This investigation is being directed by the Department’s Office of General Counsel with investigative support from Federal Student Aid. To arrange for the transmission of the requested information or should you have any other questions, please contact: Paul R. Moore, Esq., Office of the General Counsel, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Ave. SW, Room 6E304, Washington, DC 20202, Paul.Moore@ed.gov. Sincerely yours, Reed D. Rubinstein, Principal Deputy General Counsel, delegated the Authorities and Duties of the General Counsel Enclosure (Exhibit A) [FR Doc. 2020–13195 Filed 6–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY [OE Docket No. EA–483] Application to Export Electric Energy; Fuel Market LP Office of Electricity, Department of Energy. ACTION: Notice of application. AGENCY: Fuel Market LP (Applicant or Fuel Market LP) has applied for authorization to transmit electric energy from the United States to Mexico pursuant to the Federal Power Act. DATES: Comments, protests, or motions to intervene must be submitted on or before July 20, 2020. ADDRESSES: Comments, protests, motions to intervene, or requests for more information should be addressed by electronic mail to khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:17 Jun 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 Electricity.Exports@hq.doe.gov, or by facsimile to (202) 586–8008. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of Energy (DOE) regulates exports of electricity from the United States to a foreign country, pursuant to sections 301(b) and 402(f) of the Department of Energy Organization Act (42 U.S.C. 7151(b) and 42 U.S.C. 7172(f)). Such exports require authorization under section 202(e) of the Federal Power Act (16 U.S.C. 824a(e)). On June 9, 2020, Fuel Market LP filed an application with DOE (Application or App.) to transmit electric energy from the United States to Mexico for a term of five years. Fuel Market LP states that it ‘‘is a Texas corporation, with its principal place of business in Houston [Texas].’’ App. at 1. Fuel Market LP adds that it ‘‘does not own or control any electric power generation or transmission facilities and does not have a franchised electric power service area.’’ Id. at 2. Fuel Market LP further states that it ‘‘will purchase surplus electric energy from electric utilities and other suppliers within the United States and will export this energy to Mexico over the international electric transmission facilities . . . listed in Exhibit C.’’ App. at 3. Fuel Market LP contends that ‘‘[b]ecause this electric energy will be purchased from other voluntarily, it will be surplus to the needs of the selling entities [and, therefore, the proposed] export of power will not impair the sufficiency of electric power supply in the U.S.’’ Id. Fuel Market LP also ‘‘agrees to abide by the export limits of [approved] transmission facilities’’ and states that ‘‘[t]he controls that are inherent in any transaction that compiles with all [reliability] requirements and the export limits imposed by DOE on the references transmission facilities are sufficient to ensure that export by Fuel Market LP will not impede or tend to impede the coordinated use of transmission facilities’’ under the Federal Power Act. App. at 4. The existing international transmission facilities to be utilized by the Applicant have previously been authorized by Presidential permits issued pursuant to Executive Order 10485, as amended, and are appropriate for open access transmission by third parties. Procedural Matters: Any person desiring to be heard in this proceeding should file a comment or protest to the Application at the address provided above. Protests should be filed in accordance with Rule 211 of the Federal PO 00000 Frm 00027 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211). Any person desiring to become a party to this proceeding should file a motion to intervene at the above address in accordance with FERC Rule 214 (18 CFR 385.214). Comments and other filings concerning Fuel Market LP’s application to export electric energy to Mexico should be clearly marked with OE Docket No. EA–483. Additional copies are to be provided directly to Genaro Gomez, 4545 Post Oak Place Drive, Suite 217, Houston, Texas 77027; genaro@gfint.com. A final decision will be made on this Application after the environmental impacts have been evaluated pursuant to DOE’s National Environmental Policy Act Implementing Procedures (10 CFR part 1021) and after DOE determines that the proposed action will not have an adverse impact on the sufficiency of supply or reliability of the U.S. electric power supply system. Copies of this Application will be made available, upon request, by accessing the program website at https:// energy.gov/node/11845, or by emailing Matthew Aronoff at matthew.aronoff@ hq.doe.gov. Signed in Washington, DC, on June 15, 2020. Christopher Lawrence, Management and Program Analyst, Transmission Permitting and Technical Assistance, Office of Electricity. [FR Doc. 2020–13234 Filed 6–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450–01–P DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY DOE Response to Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board Recommendation 2020–1, Nuclear Safety Requirements Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, Department of Energy. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: On February 21, 2020, the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board issued Recommendation 2020–1, Nuclear Safety Requirements, to the Department of Energy. In accordance with the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, the Secretary of Energy’s response to the Recommendation is provided in this notice. DATES: Comments, data, views, or arguments concerning the Secretary’s response are due on or before July 20, 2020. ADDRESSES: Please send to: Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, 625 SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\19JNN1.SGM 19JNN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 119 (Friday, June 19, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 37083-37086]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-13195]


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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Notice of Investigation and Record Requests

AGENCY: Office of the General Counsel, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: The Department publishes a letter, dated May 27, 2020, 
notifying Case Western Reserve University of an investigation related 
to Case Western Reserve University's reports of defined gifts and 
contracts, including restricted and conditional gifts or contracts, 
from or with a statutorily defined foreign source.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Patrick Shaheen, U.S. Department of 
Education, Office of the General Counsel, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Room 
6E300, Washington, DC 20202. Telephone: (202) 453-6339. Email: 
[email protected].
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text 
telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service, toll free, at 1-800-
877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department publishes this letter, dated 
May 27, 2020, notifying Case Western Reserve University of an 
investigation related to Case Western Reserve University's reports of 
defined gifts and contracts, including restricted and conditional gifts 
or contracts, from or with a statutorily defined foreign source. The 
letter to Case Western Reserve University is in the Appendix of this 
notice.
    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, 
audiotape, or compact disc) on request to the person listed under FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. You may 
access the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of 
Federal Regulations at www.govinfo.gov. At this site you can view this 
document, as well as all other documents of this Department published 
in the Federal Register, in text or Portable Document Format (PDF). To 
use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at 
the site.
    You may also access documents of the Department published in the 
Federal Register by using the article search feature at 
www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search 
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published 
by the Department.

Reed D. Rubinstein,
Principal Deputy General Counsel delegated the authority to perform the 
functions and duties of the General Counsel.

Appendix--Letter to Case Western Reserve University

May 27, 2020

Barbara R. Snyder, President, Office of the President, Adelbert Hall 
216, 10900 Euclid Avenue, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, 
OH 44106-7001

Re: Notice of 20 U.S.C. 1011f Investigation and Record Request/Case 
Western Reserve University

Dear President Snyder:

    Section 117 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
1011f) requires institutions of higher education (IHEs), including 
Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), to report all gifts, 
contracts, and/or restricted and conditional gifts or contracts from 
or with a foreign source to the U.S. Department of Education 
(``Department''). These reports are posted at https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/about/data-center/school/foreign-gifts.

[[Page 37084]]

    CWRU is a significant recipient of American taxpayer dollars, 
including more than $412,201,774 in NIH awards from 2018-2020.\1\ 
Notably, CWRU's School of Medicine is currently one of the top 20 
U.S. medical school NIH grant recipients.\2\ On May 13, 2020, Dr. 
Qing Wang was arrested and charged by federal criminal complaint 
with false claims and wire fraud relating to more than $3.6 million 
in federal grant funding that he and his research group at CWRU's 
Cleveland Clinic Foundation (CCF) received from the National 
Institutes of Health (NIH). First joining CCF in 1997, Dr. Wang was 
a prominent researcher (professor of molecular medicine) at CCF 
until a recent NIH and Department of Justice investigation \3\ 
revealed his concurrent position as Dean of the College of Life 
Sciences and Technology at Huazhong University of Science and 
Technology (HUST) in the People's Republic of China (PRC) and his 
participation in the PRC's Thousand Talent's Program (TTP) (an 
ongoing subterfuge of the PRC to recruit individuals with access to 
foreign technology and intellectual property). See https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/former-cleveland-clinic-employee-and-chinese-thousand-talents-participant-arrested-wire-fraud.
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    \1\ See https://www.report.nih.gov/award/index.cfm?ot=MS&fy=2020&state=&ic=&fm=&orgid=218601&distr=&rfa=&om=n&pid=&view=state, https://www.report.nih.gov/award/index.cfm?ot=MS&fy=2019&state=&ic=&fm=&orgid=218601&distr=&rfa=&om=n&pid=&view=state, https://www.report.nih.gov/award/index.cfm?ot=MS&fy=2018&state=&ic=&fm=&orgid=218601&distr=&rfa=&om=n&pid=&view=state.
    \2\ See https://case.edu/medicine/about/newsroom/our-latest-news/school-medicine-soars-top-20-ranking-nih-funding-2019.
    \3\ Dr. Wang, while a faculty member at CCF, is alleged to have 
engaged in a pervasive pattern of fraud by deliberately failing to 
disclose his PRC funding and positions which overlapped with 
disclosure obligations to the NIH as part of the grant application 
process. See https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/doj-escalates-chinese-thousand-talents-crackdown-with-arrest-of-cleveland-clinic-researcher.
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    DOJ's investigation found that at the same time Dr. Wang was 
applying for and receiving NIH grants in his capacity as faculty at 
CCF, he also received undisclosed funding from the PRC's National 
Natural Science Foundation of China. See https://www.healthleadersmedia.com/ex-cleveland-clinic-researcher-arrested-charged-wire-fraud. In his TTP recruiting role, the PRC paid for Dr. 
Wang's travel to China and a three-bedroom apartment on the HUST 
campus while Dr. Wang secured PRC funds for ``recruits'' at Harvard 
Medical School, the University of California, and the University of 
Texas (pursuant to Dr. Wang's efforts on behalf of the PRC, those 
recruits received between $200,000 and $300,000 in financial 
compensation).\4\
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    \4\ See id.
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    CWRU has an ``Office of Global Strategy'' which has published a 
``Plan for Internationalization'' which includes two phases for 
transitioning CWRU to a massive international presence and creating 
``Major International Partnerships.'' \5\ CWRU's plan for 
international operations appears to be well underway. In fact, CWRU 
published that it has ``200 international agreements in more than 40 
different countries.'' See https://case.edu/international/global-strategy/major-international-partnerships. Some of CWRU's 
international efforts include recruiting students from the PRC and 
setting up partnerships in the PRC.\6\ In an August 2018 interview 
with the PRC's state-run news agency, Xinhua, you indicated that 
CWRU has ``been very fortunate to have a lot of help as we forge 
partnerships in China.'' Xinhua reported that while ``CWRU does not 
have any immediate plans to open a campus in China . . . it has been 
working on many joint research projects, and faculty and student 
exchanges [sic] programs with some of the universities in China.'' 
See https://en.people.cn/n3/2018/0827/c90000-9494467.html. CWRU's 
School of Dental Medicine, ``in a move to expand its international 
presence and influence . . . signed a six-year agreement to train 
junior faculty from Qassim University'' in Saudi Arabia in 2016. See 
https://thedaily.case.edu/dental-school-strikes-agreement-to-train-faculty-of-saudi-arabian-university/. A similar agreement was also 
signed with an Egyptian university. See https://case.edu/think/spring2016/dentalschool-international-impact.html#.XsWVqWi6OUk. 
CWRU's School of Law, pursuant to an agreement with Saudi Arabia's 
Naif Arab University for Security Sciences (NAUSS), now offers a 
Master of Arts in Financial Integrity degree program in Riyadh, 
Saudi Arabia. See https://case.edu/international/global-strategy/major-international-partnerships.
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    \5\ See https://case.edu/international/global-strategy/major-international-partnerships.
    \6\ See ``The China-to-Case Western Reserve University Pipeline 
is Flowing at Full Speed.'' https://www.crainscleveland.com/scott-suttell-blog/china-case-western-reserve-university-pipeline-flowing-full-speed.
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    Despite CWRU's very extensive entanglement with foreign sources 
here in the U.S. and abroad, a review of the Department's records 
reveals significant disclosure deficiencies. Until January 2020, 
CWRU failed to make a single foreign source disclosure to the 
Department over a more than 12-year period (since January 2, 2008). 
During the past five months, CWRU has retroactively filed disclosure 
reports indicating receipt of over $53 million in qualifying foreign 
source gifts and contracts for the period January 2013 through the 
present. CWRU now reports only one qualifying foreign source 
transaction during the entire period from January 1, 2008, through 
January 13, 2013. The Department views CWRU's reports as untimely 
and incomplete. The foreign source reporting obligation provides 
critical transparency to American taxpayers and policymakers. 
Failure to timely provide accurate disclosures could result in: (a) 
Unintentional transfers of critical research data with multiple 
applications to hostile foreign entities, (b) loss of public trust 
in university research enterprises, (c) diversions of proprietary 
and pre-publication research data to foreign entities, and (d) 
inaccurately informed decisions by policy makers about the use of 
taxpayer funding.
    The PRC has been clear about its intent to acquire high-level 
scientific foreign talent and knowledge in furtherance of China's 
high-priority scientific development, national security, and 
economic prosperity through its ``Chinese Talent Programs'' (CTP) 
and other initiatives, both lawful and illicit. One such program, 
the TTP, involves the PRC and its agencies and agents offering 
salaries, research funding, laboratory space, honorary titles, and 
other incentives in exchange for the commitment of researchers in 
transmitting and sharing highly-specialized research and knowledge 
with the PRC. It is the TTP in which CWRU's Dr. Wang was a 
recruiter. Multiple federal agencies, including the NIH, Federal 
Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and Department of Energy (DOE), have 
publicly warned about the potential damage to American national 
security interests presented by CTPs.\7\
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    \7\ NIH has clearly and repeatedly warned of the insidious 
threat of TTP to American research institutions, including colleges 
and universities. See https://nihrecord.nih.gov/2019/10/04/nih-investigates-foreign-influence-us-grantee-institutions, and https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/08/nih-investigating-whether-us-scientists-are-sharing-ideas-foreign-governments. The NIH also 
informed NIH grantees, of which CWRU is one, of the ongoing threat 
to biomedical research from foreign sources and the obligation of 
universities to timely report funding by foreign entities. The FBI 
has, likewise, warned of the TTP's threat to American security 
interests through research developed by taxpayer-funded American 
universities. See https://www.fbi.gov/news/testimony/securing-the-us-research-enterprise-from-chinas-talent-recruitment-plans-111919; 
https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Brown%20Testimony.pdf. 
The Department of Energy, similarly, has warned of and acted to 
block TTP-based efforts to access technology critical to the 
security of the United States. See https://www.directives.doe.gov/directives-documents/400-series/0486.1-border/@@images/file; https://phys.org/news/2019-06-energy-dept-blocks-china-thousand.html.
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    Section 117(f), 20 U.S.C. 1011f(f), provides that whenever it 
appears an institution has failed to comply with the law, the 
Secretary of Education may request the Attorney General commence an 
enforcement action to compel compliance and to recover the full 
costs to the United States of obtaining compliance, including all 
associated costs of investigation and enforcement. To meet the 
Department's statutory duty to verify compliance prior to any 
potential referral for enforcement action by the Attorney General, 
the Department is continuing its administrative investigation of 
CWRU and requests that you produce the following within forty-five 
(45) calendar days:
    1. All CWRU records of, regarding, or referencing gifts, 
contracts, and/or restricted or conditional gifts or contracts from 
or with a foreign source or foreign sources to CWRU. This includes, 
but is not limited to, true copies of qualifying pledges, donations, 
contributions, contracts, and/or agreements. Our request includes 
all supporting and related communications and metadata regarding 
these records. The time frame for this request is January 1, 2008, 
through the present.
    2. A list of all gifts, contracts, and/or restricted or 
conditional gifts or contracts

[[Page 37085]]

from or with a foreign source that were not contemporaneously 
reported to the Department by CWRU between January 1, 2008 and the 
present. For each such gift, contract, and/or restricted or 
conditional gift or contract, please (a) list the name and address 
of the foreign source; (b) list the CWRU person(s) who solicited, 
negotiated, or benefited from each such gift, contract, and/or 
conditional gift or contract; and (c) explain in a detailed 
narrative why CWRU failed to lawfully disclose the gift, contract, 
and/or conditional gift or contract.
    3. All records of, regarding, or referencing gifts, contracts, 
and/or restricted or conditional gifts or contracts from or with: 
(i) The government of the PRC and/or its agencies, departments, 
agents, employees and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, 
the United States, or elsewhere); the Central Committee of the 
Communist Party of China and/or its agents, employees, and 
instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or 
elsewhere); the People's Liberation Army and/or its agents, 
employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the 
United States, or elsewhere); Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., Huawei 
Technologies USA, Inc., ZTE Corp and/or their agents, employees, 
subsidiaries, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the 
United States, or elsewhere); and any China-based university or 
educational entity, and/or their agents, employees, and 
instrumentalities (whether domiciled in China, the United States, or 
elsewhere). (ii) The government of Saudi Arabia and/or its agents, 
employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Saudi Arabia, 
the United States, or elsewhere); and any Saudi Arabian university 
or educational entity and/or its agents, employees, and 
instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Saudi Arabia, the United 
States, or elsewhere). (iii) The government of Egypt, its agents, 
employees, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Egypt, the 
United States, or elsewhere); and any Egyptian university or 
educational entity and/or its agents, employees, and 
instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Egypt, the United States, or 
elsewhere). (iv) The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, 
and/or its agents, employees, and instrumentalities (whether 
domiciled in Iran, the United States, or elsewhere); the Islamic 
Revolutionary Guard Corps and/or its agents, employees, and 
instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Iran, the United States, or 
elsewhere); any Iranian foundation (e.g. the ``Foundation for the 
Oppressed''), corporation, or legal entity and/or its agents, 
employees, subsidiaries, and instrumentalities (whether domiciled in 
Iran, the United States, or elsewhere); and any Iranian university 
or educational entity and/or its agents, employees, and 
instrumentalities (whether domiciled in Iran, the United States, or 
elsewhere). For each such gift, contract, and/or restricted or 
conditional gift or contract, specify all CWRU person(s) (e.g. 
principal investigator, student, faculty member, employee, 
foundation, department) who were the object or beneficiaries 
thereof. The time frame for this request is January 1, 2008, through 
the present.
    4. A complete list of any current or former CWRU faculty and 
staff, whether paid or unpaid, (including full and part time 
employees and contractors) involved in Chinese talent-recruitment 
and related programs (including TTP) from January 1, 2008, through 
the present. Provided contact information should include names, 
position(s) held, email addresses, mailing addresses, and phone 
numbers.
    5. Identification of CWRU administrators or other personnel with 
responsibility for and/or oversight of faculty and staff involved in 
Chinese talent-recruitment programs (including TTP) from January 1, 
2008, through the present. Provided contact information should 
include names, specific responsibilities, position(s) held, email 
addresses, mailing addresses, and phone numbers.
    6. Identification of all known talent recruitment agencies, 
agents, and/or representatives who facilitated and/or supervised 
CWRU faculty and/or staff who were engaged in Chinese talent-
recruitment programs (including TTP) from January 1, 2008, through 
the present. Provided contact information should include names, 
titles, apparent functions, email addresses, mailing addresses, and 
phone numbers.
    7. All records of, regarding, or referencing communications 
concerning Chinese talent-recruitment programs (including TTP) and/
or the involvement of CWRU faculty, staff, and students in Chinese 
talent-recruitment programs, from January 1, 2008, through the 
present.
    8. All documents, including all written records, agreements, 
contracts, and modifications of contracts, evidencing agreements or 
consideration of agreements between CWRU, its faculty, staff, and 
administrators, and Chinese talent-recruitment program (including 
TTP) agencies or agents.
    9. All records of CWRU's compliance with U.S. government 
requirements under Executive Order 13224 and related legal 
authorities, and under all relevant U.S. Department of the Treasury 
Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) laws, regulations, and 
guidance related, inter alia, to Iran.
    The Department requests that CWRU's production of records in 
response to this request utilize the following procedures:
     Searches for records in electronic form should include 
searches of all relevant mobile devices, hard drives, network 
drives, offline electronic folders, thumb drives, removable drives, 
records stored in the cloud, and archive files, including, but not 
limited to, backup tapes. Do not time stamp or modify the content, 
the create date, or the last date modified of any record and do not 
scrub any metadata.
     All email searches should be conducted by the agency's 
information technology department, or its equivalent, and not by the 
individuals whose records are being searched. Please provide the 
name and contact information of the individual(s) who conducted the 
search, as well as an explanation of how the search was conducted.
     To the extent practicable, please produce all records 
in a searchable electronic format and not hardcopies. Electronic 
records should be produced in native format. For emails, please 
place responses in one .pst file per employee. All other loose 
electronic files should be produced in their native format. To the 
extent practicable, all files should be produced in a manner that 
facilitates quick and accurate custodial assignment. Should CWRU 
have any questions about the method or format of production please 
contact the undersigned.
    As used in this Notice of Investigation and Information Request:
    ``Agencies'' include any organizations or entities providing 
services or performing functions or tasks on behalf of another 
organization, entity, or individual.
    ``Agent'' has its plain and ordinary meaning, indicating that a 
person, organization, or entity, is acting on behalf of another 
person, organization, or entity, whether that agency is disclosed or 
undisclosed.
    ``Contract'' has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(1).
    ``Faculty'' refers to all teaching positions at the university 
(including professors of all ranks, teachers, lecturers, and/or 
researchers whether in a classroom, laboratory, or other educational 
environment--whether physically or electronically present).
    ``Foreign source'' has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 
1011f(h)(2).
    ``Gift'' has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(3).
    ``Institution'' has the meaning given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(4) 
and for the purposes of this request includes CWRU, its employees, 
tenured faculty, non-tenured faculty and lecturers, researchers, 
fellows, graduate students, and all affiliated entities operating 
substantially under its control or for its benefit (e.g., centers, 
schools, boards, foundations, research facilities, laboratories, 
branches, partnerships, or non-profit organizations).
    ``Record'' means all recorded information, regardless of form or 
characteristics, made or received, and including metadata, such as 
email and other electronic communication, word processing documents, 
PDF documents, animations (including PowerPointTM and 
other similar programs) spreadsheets, databases, calendars, 
telephone logs, contact manager information, internet usage files, 
network access information, writings, drawings, graphs, charts, 
photographs, sound recordings, images, financial statements, checks, 
wire transfers, accounts, ledgers, facsimiles, texts, animations, 
voicemail files, data generated by calendaring, task management and 
personal information management (PIM) software (such as Microsoft 
Outlook), data created with the use of personal data assistants 
(PDAs), data created with the use of document management software, 
data created with the use of paper and electronic mail logging and 
routing software, and other data or data compilations, stored in any 
medium from which information can be obtained either directly or, if 
necessary, after translation by the responding party into a 
reasonably usable form. The term ``recorded information'' also 
includes all traditional forms of records, regardless of physical 
form or characteristics.

[[Page 37086]]

    ``Restricted or conditional gift or contract'' has the meaning 
given at 20 U.S.C. 1011f(h)(5).
    ``Staff'' refers to all members of the university involved in 
administration of the university and its obligations and commitments 
(including deans of all ranks, administration officials, and support 
personnel).
    If CWRU asserts attorney-client or attorney-work product 
privilege for a given record, then it must prepare and submit a 
privilege log expressly identifying each such record and describing 
it so the Department may assess the claim's validity. Please note 
that no other privileges apply here. CWRU's record and data 
preservation obligations are outlined at Exhibit A.
    The Department recognizes that the impact of the Coronavirus on 
all IHE operations is profound and ongoing. Nonetheless, the 
possible national security implications of undisclosed gifts, 
contracts, and/or restricted and conditional gifts or contracts from 
or with foreign sources is a critical matter and CWRU's statutory 
reporting obligation is long-standing. Therefore, your timely 
response to this Notice of Investigation and Record Request is 
essential.
    This investigation is being directed by the Department's Office 
of General Counsel with investigative support from Federal Student 
Aid. To arrange for the transmission of the requested information or 
should you have any other questions, please contact: Paul R. Moore, 
Esq., Office of the General Counsel, U.S. Department of Education, 
400 Maryland Ave. SW, Room 6E304, Washington, DC 20202, 
[email protected].

Sincerely yours,

Reed D. Rubinstein,
Principal Deputy General Counsel, delegated the Authorities and 
Duties of the General Counsel

Enclosure (Exhibit A)

[FR Doc. 2020-13195 Filed 6-18-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P