Service Contracts, 38086-38089 [2020-13045]

Download as PDF 38086 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 123 / Thursday, June 25, 2020 / Rules and Regulations reference, Intergovernmental relations, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds. Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq. Dated: May 27, 2020. John Busterud, Regional Administrator, Region IX. [FR Doc. 2020–11931 Filed 6–24–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P Chapter I, title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended as follows: FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION 46 CFR Part 530 PART 52—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF IMPLEMENTATION PLANS [Docket No. 20–02] RIN 3072–AC80 1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows: ■ Service Contracts ACTION: Subpart F—California 2. Section 52.220 is amended by adding paragraphs (c)(514)(ii)(A)(6) and (c)(532)(ii)(A)(2) to read as follows: ■ Identification of plan—in part. * * * * * (c) * * * (514) * * * (ii) * * * (A) * * * (6) 2018 Updates to the California State Implementation Plan, adopted on October 25, 2018, chapter III (‘‘SIP Elements for Ventura County’’), section III.C (‘‘Contingency Measures’’); only. * * * * * (532) * * * (ii) * * * (A) * * * (2) Final 2016 Ventura County Air Quality Management Plan, adopted February 14, 2017, chapter 7 (‘‘Contingency Measures’’), only. * * * * * 3. Section 52.248 is amended by adding paragraph (j) to read as follows: ■ § 52.248 Identification of plan—conditional approval. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES * * * * * (j) The EPA is conditionally approving the California State Implementation Plan (SIP) for Ventura County for the 2008 ozone NAAQS with respect to the contingency measures requirements of CAA sections 172(c)(9) and 182(c)(9). The conditional approval is based on a commitment from the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District (District) in a letter dated August 16, 2019, to adopt a specific rule revision, and a commitment from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) dated August 30, 2019, to submit the amended District rule to the EPA within 12 months of the effective date of the VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:57 Jun 24, 2020 Jkt 250001 Federal Maritime Commission. Final rule. AGENCY: Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq. § 52.220 final conditional approval. If the District or CARB fail to meet their commitments within one year of the effective date of the final conditional approval, the conditional approval is treated as a disapproval. The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC or Commission) amends its regulations governing service contracts to eliminate the requirement that ocean carriers publish a concise statement of essential terms with each service contract. The rule will reduce regulatory burden. DATES: Effective June 25, 2020. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical questions, contact Florence A. Carr, Director, Bureau of Trade Analysis, Federal Maritime Commission, 800 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20573–0001. Phone: (202) 523–5796. Email: TradeAnalysis@fmc.gov. For legal questions, contact William Shakely, Acting General Counsel, Federal Maritime Commission, 800 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20573–0001. Phone: (202) 523–5740. Email: GeneralCounsel@fmc.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: I. Introduction This rulemaking was initiated pursuant to the Commission’s December 20, 2019 Order in FMC Docket No. P3– 18, which granted in part and denied in part, a petition by the World Shipping Council (WSC) for regulatory relief. Pet’n of the World Shipping Council for an Exemption from Certain Provisions of the Shipping Act of 1984, as amended, and for a Rulemaking Proceeding, Pet. No. P3–18, 1 F.M.C.2d 504 (FMC Dec. 20, 2019). Specifically, the Commission granted WSC’s request for an exemption from the requirement in 46 U.S.C. 40502(d) that carriers publish a concise Statement of Essential Terms (ETs) with each service contract, determining that an exemption from section 40502(d) would not result in a substantial reduction in competition or PO 00000 Frm 00056 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 be detrimental to commerce, and further determined to initiate a rulemaking to implement the ET publication exemption. On February 14, 2020, the Commission issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to obtain public comments regarding its proposal to implement the exemption by removing the ET publication requirements in 46 CFR part 530. 85 FR 8527 (Feb. 14, 2020). The Commission calculated that the proposed rule would reduce the regulatory burden associated with these requirements. The comment period for the NPRM expired April 14, 2020. Two comments were received, from the National Industrial Transportation League (NITL) and the World Shipping Council. II. Discussion As described in more detail below, the final rule adopts much of the proposed regulatory text without substantive change. The final rule eliminates the requirement in § 530.12 that carriers publish ETs for individual service contracts. Although the NPRM proposed replacing this requirement with a requirement that carriers publish general service contract rules and notices as a separate part of the individual carrier’s automated tariff system, the Commission has determined to make this provision optional rather than mandatory. The final rule also adopts the following regulatory changes proposed in the NPRM: (1) Changes to other sections in Part 530 to reflect the elimination of the ET publication requirements; (2) the correction of outdated references to FMC bureaus and offices in Part 530; and (3) the correction of an outdated reference to a Department of Defense Command. A. Removal of ET Publication Requirements Commenters in the subject rulemaking did not identify a use for the publication of ETs corresponding to individual service contracts, and therefore, supported their elimination. NITL strongly supports the Commission’s NPRM. Agreeing with the Commission’s assessment that ‘‘the publication of Statements of Essential Terms corresponding to individual service contracts is of questionable value,’’ NITL believes that the current ET publication requirements ‘‘impose significant regulatory costs and burdens on ocean carriers, without providing any meaningful benefits to shippers that outweigh the costs.’’ WSC supports the NPRM to the extent it would eliminate the requirement to publish service contract essential terms. E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 123 / Thursday, June 25, 2020 / Rules and Regulations Therefore, the Commission has determined to implement the exemption from section 40502(d) by revising the Commission’s regulations at 46 CFR 530.12, which currently require ocean carriers to publish ETs corresponding to their individual service contracts in tariff format. Consistent with the purpose of the NPRM, WSC also recommends that the Commission change the heading of 46 CFR part 530 subpart C in the final rule to read ‘‘Publication of service contract rules and notices.’’ The Commission agrees that it is appropriate to revise the heading of part 530 subpart C to reflect the elimination of the publication requirements for ETs and to reflect and clarify the ongoing purpose of § 530.12 related to the optional publication of service contract rules and notices as a separate part of the individual carrier’s automated tariff system. The Commission has therefore made this change in the final rule. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES B. Publication of Service Contract Rules and Notices As the Commission noted in the NPRM, in addition to the required Statements of Essential Terms, most, if not all, ocean carriers include in their ET publications, the rules and notices that generally apply to all service contracts or to a particular subset of service contracts. Thus, an ocean carrier’s ET publication may be comprised of two components: (1) The rules and notices that generally apply to all service contracts; and (2) the required ETs corresponding to individual service contracts. As explained in the NPRM, in the Commission’s experience, there can be substantial benefits to both ocean carriers and shippers by publishing a ‘‘blanket’’ rule or notice in the carrier’s ET tariff publication that applies to most, or all, service contracts, thereby eliminating the potential need to periodically amend hundreds of individual service contracts. Consequently, the Commission seeks to facilitate the ocean carriers’ current practice of publishing generally applicable service contract tariff rules and notices in their ET tariff publications. The Commission therefore proposed to amend the existing requirement in § 530.12 that ocean carriers must publish ETs corresponding to individual service contracts and replace it with a requirement that ocean carriers publish general service contract rules and notices as a separate part of the individual ocean carrier’s automated tariff system, thereby codifying existing ocean carrier practice. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:57 Jun 24, 2020 Jkt 250001 NITL indicated its support for ocean carriers publishing general service contract rules and notices in their carrier automated tariff systems, as this latter requirement ‘‘will simply implement a current practice followed by most ocean carriers.’’ NITL, at 2. As reflected in NITL’s comments, the ability to publish such rules and notices benefits ocean carriers and shippers alike, by obviating the need to amend hundreds of service contracts, should unusual circumstances arise. NITL also cites with approval the Commission’s estimate that the proposed amendments ‘‘will significantly reduce administrative burdens’’ and ‘‘will benefit all industry stakeholders.’’ Id. at 3. WSC’s comments suggest, however, that an ocean carrier’s service contract rules and notices can be published under the tariff regulations in 46 CFR part 520 and that any requirement to publish service contract rules and notices in a separate publication under 46 CFR part 530 reflects a new regulatory burden. The Commission’s intent in the NPRM was to retain the existing practice, favored by most ocean carriers, of allowing service contract rules and notices to be published in a separate document under 46 CFR part 530. The Commission has determined that this can be accomplished by making carrier publication of such rules and notices under 46 CFR 530.12 optional rather than mandatory, thereby eliminating any risk of additional regulatory burden on carriers. At the carrier’s discretion, such publication may be accomplished under the tariff regulations in part 520 or in a separate publication under 46 CFR 530.12. The final rule therefore relieves ocean carriers of the regulatory burden of ET publication by eliminating individual Statements of Essential Terms, while retaining the ability of ocean carriers to publish service contract rules and notices in their ET tariff publications, should they wish to do so. III. Regulatory Notices and Analysis Effective Date The Administrative Procedure Act generally requires a minimum of 30 days before a final rule can go into effect, but excepts from this requirement: (1) Substantive rules which grant or recognize an exemption or relieve a restriction; (2) interpretive rules and statements of policy; and (3) when an agency finds good cause for a shorter period of time and includes those findings with the rule. 5 U.S.C. 553(d). PO 00000 Frm 00057 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 38087 The final rule implements the Commission’s determination to exempt ocean carriers from the requirement that they publish ETs with each service contract. The final rule also allows, but does not require, carriers to publish general service contract rules and notices as a separate part of the individual carrier’s automated tariff system. The remaining amendments are technical amendments to update the names of Commission bureaus and offices as well as those of other government entities. Because the final rule grants or recognizes an exemption, the Commission has determined to make the rule effective upon publication. Congressional Review Act The rule is not a ‘‘major rule’’ as defined by the Congressional Review Act, codified at 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq. The rule will not result in: (1) An annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or more; (2) a major increase in costs or prices; or (3) significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of United States-based companies to compete with foreignbased companies. 5 U.S.C. 804(2). Regulatory Flexibility Act The Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601–612, provides that whenever an agency promulgates a final rule after being required to publish a notice of proposed rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. 553, the agency must prepare and make available for public comment a final regulatory flexibility analysis describing the impact of the rule on small entities, unless the head of the agency certifies that the rulemaking will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 5 U.S.C. 604, 605. Accordingly, the Chairman of the Federal Maritime Commission certifies that the final rule will not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. The regulated business entities that would be impacted by the rule are vessel-operating common carriers. The Commission has determined that VOCCs generally do not qualify as small entities under the guidelines of the Small Business Administration (SBA). See FMC Policy and Procedures Regarding Proper Consideration of Small Entities in Rulemakings (Feb. 7, 2003), available at https://www.fmc.gov/ wp-content/uploads/2018/10/SBREFA_ Guidelines_2003.pdf. E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES 38088 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 123 / Thursday, June 25, 2020 / Rules and Regulations Paperwork Reduction Act The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501–3521) (PRA) requires an agency to seek and receive approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) before collecting information from the public. 44 U.S.C. 3507. The agency must submit collections of information in proposed rules to OMB in conjunction with the publication of the notice of proposed rulemaking. 5 CFR 1320.11. The information collection requirements in Part 530, Service Contracts, are currently authorized under OMB Control Number 3072–0065. In compliance with the PRA, the Commission submitted the proposed revised information collections to the Office of Management and Budget. Notice of the revised information collections was published in the Federal Register and public comments were invited. See 85 FR 8527 (February 14, 2020). Comments received regarding the proposed changes, as well as the Commission’s responses, are discussed above. No comments specifically addressed the revised information collection in Part 530, with the exception of a reference by one commenter to the cost savings cited in the NPRM as a basis for its strong support. As noted above, this final rule will eliminate a substantial and unnecessary regulatory burden on ocean carriers by removing the requirement to publish Statements of Essential Terms corresponding to individual service contract filings. The final rule also includes an option allowing, but not requiring, carriers to publish general service contract rules and notices, which most VOCCs currently include in their ET tariffs, thereby avoiding the need to amend hundreds of individual service contracts, should circumstances so warrant. As background, of the 147 VOCCs currently serving the U.S. trades, 71 do not file service contracts with the Commission, and thus would not be impacted by this rulemaking. Of the 76 VOCC that file service contracts, 25 filed less than ten original contracts thus far in FY 2020, with seven of those only filing one contract this fiscal year. Among VOCCs that utilize service contracts more extensively as a pricing mechanism, only 20 filed over 100 original contracts thus far in FY 2020. With respect to the cost savings associated with eliminating the publication of Statements of Essential Terms corresponding to original service contracts and amendments, the Commission estimates the savings to VOCCs as roughly 41,048 man-hours, VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:57 Jun 24, 2020 Jkt 250001 for an approximate savings of $1,987,133 annually.1 Service contract rules and notices in carrier automated tariff systems, on the other hand, are rarely published or revised, inasmuch as they govern a broad swath of carrier contracts, and many times are intended to quickly and efficiently address an ad hoc industry situation.2 Thus, in any given year, there may be no new service contract rules or notices published in a carrier’s automated tariff system. The Commission observes that there are potential benefits associated with ensuring that carriers have the option to continue to publish these rules and notices as a separate part of the individual carrier’s automated tariff system, thereby allowing a carrier to avoid revising hundreds of service contracts. Regarding the burden associated with the filing of service contracts with the Commission, a substantial majority of filers, 74 percent, have recognized greater efficiencies by automating their service contract filing processes using the Commission’s ‘‘web services’’ automated filing system. Using FY 2018 figures, the Commission estimates the remaining burden associated with service contract filing to be roughly 3,542 man-hours, or $402,088 annually.3 Inclusive of the burden associated with the optional publication 1 The Commission’s previous service contract rulemaking in Docket No. 16–05 estimated the time associated with preparation of an individual ET publication as 3 minutes. No commenters opposed that estimate. More recently, the Commission informally interviewed two major tariff publishers that file service contracts and publish ETs for multiple VOCCs. These tariff publishers estimated the time required to prepare an ETs to be 3 to 6 minutes. The larger of the two tariff publishers reported that their 3-minute preparation time was due to its proprietary technological efficiencies. The above-referenced savings are based on the 3-minute preparation time estimate, using the Commission’s most recent fiscal year’s filing statistics for new contracts and amendments. In FY 2018, 47,962 new service contracts and 772,803 amendments were filed. 2 As one example, a major ocean carrier published a blanket notice in its ET tariff applying to hundreds of its service contracts when it deployed an extra loader vessel to meet unexpected shipper demand. This notice allowed existing contract rates applying to a specifically named service string to also apply to cargo moving on the extra loader vessel, thereby eliminating the VOCC’s burden of amending hundreds of service contracts. 3 In the Commission’s previous service contract rulemaking in Docket No. 16–05, each service contract filing (new or amendment) was estimated to take 3 minutes. Since that rulemaking, carriers and tariff publishers comprising the highest volume service contract filers have continued automating their filing processes. Filers that implemented the Commission’s ‘‘web services’’ automated filing process have advised that minimal software programming was required to facilitate the automated upload of service contracts and amendments. Once automated, contract data can be transmitted into SERVCON in a matter of seconds, without need for human intervention. PO 00000 Frm 00058 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 of service contract rules under § 530.12,4 the entire burden associated with this information collection is calculated as $3,482,351 for contract filers, a substantial reduction. National Environmental Policy Act The Commission’s regulations categorically exclude certain rulemakings from any requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement because they do not increase or decrease air, water or noise pollution or the use of fossil fuels, recyclables, or energy. 46 CFR 504.4. The proposed rule amends the requirements related to the publication of Essential Terms associated with service contracts. This rulemaking thus falls within the categorical exclusion for actions related to the receipt service contracts (§ 504.4(a)(5)). Therefore, no environmental assessment or environmental impact statement is required. Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform) This rule meets the applicable standards in E.O. 12988 titled, ‘‘Civil Justice Reform,’’ to minimize litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden. Regulation Identifier Number The Commission assigns a regulation identifier number (RIN) to each regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions (Unified Agenda). The Regulatory Information Service Center publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of each year. You may use the RIN contained in the heading at the beginning of this document to find this action in the Unified Agenda, at http:// www.reginfo.gov/public/do/ eAgendaMain. List of Subjects in 46 CFR Part 530 Freight, Maritime carriers, Report and recordkeeping requirements. For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Federal Maritime Commission amends 46 CFR part 530 as follows: PART 530—SERVICE CONTRACTS 1. The authority citation for part 530 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 5 U.S.C. 553; 46 U.S.C. 305, 40301–40306, 40501–40503, 41307. 4 In our OMB filing related to this Information Collection, the burden of maintaining service contract rules and notices is estimated at 87 hours. E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 123 / Thursday, June 25, 2020 / Rules and Regulations 2. Amend § 530.1 by revising the first sentence to read as follows: ■ § 530.1 Purpose. The purpose of this part is to facilitate the filing of service contracts as required by section 8(c) of the Shipping Act of 1984 (‘‘the Act’’) (46 U.S.C. 40502). * * * ■ 3. Amend § 530.3 by revising paragraphs (d) and (o) and removing paragraph (s) to read as follows: § 530.3 Definitions. * * * * * (d) BTA means the Commission’s Bureau of Trade Analysis or its successor bureau. * * * * * (o) OIT means the Commission’s Office of Information Technology. * * * * * ■ 4. Amend § 530.5 by revising paragraphs (a) and (c)(1) to read as follows: § 530.5 Duty to file. (a) The duty under this part to file service contracts, amendments, and notices shall be upon the individual carrier party or parties participating or eligible to participate in the service contract. * * * * * (c) * * * (1) Application. Authority to file or delegate the authority to file must be requested by a responsible official of the service contract carrier in writing by submitting to BTA the Registration Form (FMC–83) in Exhibit 1 to this part. * * * * * ■ 5. Amend § 530.8 by revising paragraph (d) introductory text and removing paragraph (d)(4) to read as follows: § 530.8 Service contracts. * * * * * (d) Other requirements. Every service contract filed with BTA shall include, as set forth in appendix A to this part: * * * * * § 530.10 [Amended] 6. Amend § 530.10 by removing paragraph (f). ■ 7. Revise subpart C heading to read as follows: jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES ■ Subpart C—Publication of service contract rules and notices. ■ 8. Revise § 530.12 to read as follows: § 530.12 Exceptions and exemptions. * * * * * (b) * * * (2) Department of Defense cargo. Transportation of U.S. Department of Defense cargo moving in foreign commerce under terms and conditions negotiated and approved by the Surface Deployment and Distribution Command and published in a universal service contract. An exact copy of the universal service contract, including any amendments thereto, shall be filed with the Commission as soon as it becomes available. * * * * * ■ 10. Amend § 530.15 by revising paragraph (c) to read as follows: Recordkeeping and audit. * (a) Location—(1) Generally. A statement of service contract rules and 16:57 Jun 24, 2020 § 530.13 § 530.15 Rules and notices. VerDate Sep<11>2014 notices may be published as a separate part of the individual ocean common carrier’s automated tariff system. (2) Multi-party service contracts. For service contracts in which more than one carrier participates or is eligible to participate, a statement of service contract rules and notices may be published: (i) If the service contract is entered into under the authority of a conference agreement, then in that conference’s automated tariff system; (ii) If the service contract is entered into under the authority of a nonconference agreement, then in each of the participating or eligible-toparticipate carriers’ individual automated tariff systems, clearly indicating the relevant FMC-assigned agreement number. (b) Certainty of terms. A statement of service contract rules and notices described in paragraph (a) of this section may not: (1) Be uncertain, vague, or ambiguous; or (2) Make reference to terms not explicitly detailed in the statement of service contract rules and notices, unless those terms are contained in a publication widely available to the public and well known within the industry. (c) Agents. Common carriers, conferences, or agreements may use agents to meet their publication requirements under this part. (d) Commission listing. The Commission will publish on its website, www.fmc.gov, a listing of the locations of all service contract rules and notices. ■ 9. Amend § 530.13 by revising paragraph (b)(2) to read as follows: Jkt 250001 * * * * (c) Production for audit within 30 days of request. Every carrier or PO 00000 Frm 00059 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 38089 agreement shall, upon written request of the FMC’s Director, Bureau of Enforcement, any Area Representative or the Director, Bureau of Trade Analysis, submit copies of requested original service contracts or their associated records within thirty (30) days of the date of the request. * * * * * Appendix A to Part 530 [Amended] 11. In Appendix A revise all references to ‘‘BTCL’’ to read ‘‘BTA’’ and revise all references to ‘‘OIRM’’ to read ‘‘OIT’’. ■ By the Commission. Rachel E. Dickon, Secretary. [FR Doc. 2020–13045 Filed 6–24–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION 47 CFR Part 27 [GN Docket No. 18–122; FCC 20–22; FRS 16812] Expanding Flexible Use of the 3.7 to 4.2 GHz Band; Correction Federal Communications Commission. ACTION: Final rule; announcement of compliance date; correction. AGENCY: The Federal Communications Commission (Commission) is correcting the compliance date announced in a document that appeared in the Federal Register on May 27, 2020. The document announced that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) had approved the information collection requirements associated with the eligible space station operator accelerated relocation election, eligible space station operator transition plan, and incumbent earth station lump sum payment election rules adopted in the Commission’s 3.7 GHz Report and Order, FCC 20–22, and that compliance with the new rules is now required. This document corrects the effective and compliance dates for these new information collection requirements. DATES: June 25, 2020. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Anna Gentry, Mobility Division, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, at (202) 418–7769 or Anna.Gentry@ fcc.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Correction In FR Doc. 2020–10167 appearing on page 31704 in the Federal Register of E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 123 (Thursday, June 25, 2020)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 38086-38089]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-13045]


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FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION

46 CFR Part 530

[Docket No. 20-02]
RIN 3072-AC80


Service Contracts

AGENCY: Federal Maritime Commission.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC or Commission) amends its 
regulations governing service contracts to eliminate the requirement 
that ocean carriers publish a concise statement of essential terms with 
each service contract. The rule will reduce regulatory burden.

DATES: Effective June 25, 2020.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical questions, contact 
Florence A. Carr, Director, Bureau of Trade Analysis, Federal Maritime 
Commission, 800 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20573-0001. 
Phone: (202) 523-5796. Email: [email protected]. For legal 
questions, contact William Shakely, Acting General Counsel, Federal 
Maritime Commission, 800 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20573-
0001. Phone: (202) 523-5740. Email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Introduction

    This rulemaking was initiated pursuant to the Commission's December 
20, 2019 Order in FMC Docket No. P3-18, which granted in part and 
denied in part, a petition by the World Shipping Council (WSC) for 
regulatory relief. Pet'n of the World Shipping Council for an Exemption 
from Certain Provisions of the Shipping Act of 1984, as amended, and 
for a Rulemaking Proceeding, Pet. No. P3-18, 1 F.M.C.2d 504 (FMC Dec. 
20, 2019). Specifically, the Commission granted WSC's request for an 
exemption from the requirement in 46 U.S.C. 40502(d) that carriers 
publish a concise Statement of Essential Terms (ETs) with each service 
contract, determining that an exemption from section 40502(d) would not 
result in a substantial reduction in competition or be detrimental to 
commerce, and further determined to initiate a rulemaking to implement 
the ET publication exemption.
    On February 14, 2020, the Commission issued a Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking (NPRM) to obtain public comments regarding its proposal to 
implement the exemption by removing the ET publication requirements in 
46 CFR part 530. 85 FR 8527 (Feb. 14, 2020). The Commission calculated 
that the proposed rule would reduce the regulatory burden associated 
with these requirements. The comment period for the NPRM expired April 
14, 2020. Two comments were received, from the National Industrial 
Transportation League (NITL) and the World Shipping Council.

II. Discussion

    As described in more detail below, the final rule adopts much of 
the proposed regulatory text without substantive change. The final rule 
eliminates the requirement in Sec.  530.12 that carriers publish ETs 
for individual service contracts. Although the NPRM proposed replacing 
this requirement with a requirement that carriers publish general 
service contract rules and notices as a separate part of the individual 
carrier's automated tariff system, the Commission has determined to 
make this provision optional rather than mandatory. The final rule also 
adopts the following regulatory changes proposed in the NPRM: (1) 
Changes to other sections in Part 530 to reflect the elimination of the 
ET publication requirements; (2) the correction of outdated references 
to FMC bureaus and offices in Part 530; and (3) the correction of an 
outdated reference to a Department of Defense Command.

A. Removal of ET Publication Requirements

    Commenters in the subject rulemaking did not identify a use for the 
publication of ETs corresponding to individual service contracts, and 
therefore, supported their elimination. NITL strongly supports the 
Commission's NPRM. Agreeing with the Commission's assessment that ``the 
publication of Statements of Essential Terms corresponding to 
individual service contracts is of questionable value,'' NITL believes 
that the current ET publication requirements ``impose significant 
regulatory costs and burdens on ocean carriers, without providing any 
meaningful benefits to shippers that outweigh the costs.'' WSC supports 
the NPRM to the extent it would eliminate the requirement to publish 
service contract essential terms.

[[Page 38087]]

    Therefore, the Commission has determined to implement the exemption 
from section 40502(d) by revising the Commission's regulations at 46 
CFR 530.12, which currently require ocean carriers to publish ETs 
corresponding to their individual service contracts in tariff format.
    Consistent with the purpose of the NPRM, WSC also recommends that 
the Commission change the heading of 46 CFR part 530 subpart C in the 
final rule to read ``Publication of service contract rules and 
notices.'' The Commission agrees that it is appropriate to revise the 
heading of part 530 subpart C to reflect the elimination of the 
publication requirements for ETs and to reflect and clarify the ongoing 
purpose of Sec.  530.12 related to the optional publication of service 
contract rules and notices as a separate part of the individual 
carrier's automated tariff system. The Commission has therefore made 
this change in the final rule.

B. Publication of Service Contract Rules and Notices

    As the Commission noted in the NPRM, in addition to the required 
Statements of Essential Terms, most, if not all, ocean carriers include 
in their ET publications, the rules and notices that generally apply to 
all service contracts or to a particular subset of service contracts. 
Thus, an ocean carrier's ET publication may be comprised of two 
components: (1) The rules and notices that generally apply to all 
service contracts; and (2) the required ETs corresponding to individual 
service contracts.
    As explained in the NPRM, in the Commission's experience, there can 
be substantial benefits to both ocean carriers and shippers by 
publishing a ``blanket'' rule or notice in the carrier's ET tariff 
publication that applies to most, or all, service contracts, thereby 
eliminating the potential need to periodically amend hundreds of 
individual service contracts. Consequently, the Commission seeks to 
facilitate the ocean carriers' current practice of publishing generally 
applicable service contract tariff rules and notices in their ET tariff 
publications. The Commission therefore proposed to amend the existing 
requirement in Sec.  530.12 that ocean carriers must publish ETs 
corresponding to individual service contracts and replace it with a 
requirement that ocean carriers publish general service contract rules 
and notices as a separate part of the individual ocean carrier's 
automated tariff system, thereby codifying existing ocean carrier 
practice.
    NITL indicated its support for ocean carriers publishing general 
service contract rules and notices in their carrier automated tariff 
systems, as this latter requirement ``will simply implement a current 
practice followed by most ocean carriers.'' NITL, at 2. As reflected in 
NITL's comments, the ability to publish such rules and notices benefits 
ocean carriers and shippers alike, by obviating the need to amend 
hundreds of service contracts, should unusual circumstances arise. NITL 
also cites with approval the Commission's estimate that the proposed 
amendments ``will significantly reduce administrative burdens'' and 
``will benefit all industry stakeholders.'' Id. at 3.
    WSC's comments suggest, however, that an ocean carrier's service 
contract rules and notices can be published under the tariff 
regulations in 46 CFR part 520 and that any requirement to publish 
service contract rules and notices in a separate publication under 46 
CFR part 530 reflects a new regulatory burden. The Commission's intent 
in the NPRM was to retain the existing practice, favored by most ocean 
carriers, of allowing service contract rules and notices to be 
published in a separate document under 46 CFR part 530. The Commission 
has determined that this can be accomplished by making carrier 
publication of such rules and notices under 46 CFR 530.12 optional 
rather than mandatory, thereby eliminating any risk of additional 
regulatory burden on carriers. At the carrier's discretion, such 
publication may be accomplished under the tariff regulations in part 
520 or in a separate publication under 46 CFR 530.12.
    The final rule therefore relieves ocean carriers of the regulatory 
burden of ET publication by eliminating individual Statements of 
Essential Terms, while retaining the ability of ocean carriers to 
publish service contract rules and notices in their ET tariff 
publications, should they wish to do so.

III. Regulatory Notices and Analysis

Effective Date

    The Administrative Procedure Act generally requires a minimum of 30 
days before a final rule can go into effect, but excepts from this 
requirement: (1) Substantive rules which grant or recognize an 
exemption or relieve a restriction; (2) interpretive rules and 
statements of policy; and (3) when an agency finds good cause for a 
shorter period of time and includes those findings with the rule. 5 
U.S.C. 553(d).
    The final rule implements the Commission's determination to exempt 
ocean carriers from the requirement that they publish ETs with each 
service contract. The final rule also allows, but does not require, 
carriers to publish general service contract rules and notices as a 
separate part of the individual carrier's automated tariff system. The 
remaining amendments are technical amendments to update the names of 
Commission bureaus and offices as well as those of other government 
entities. Because the final rule grants or recognizes an exemption, the 
Commission has determined to make the rule effective upon publication.

Congressional Review Act

    The rule is not a ``major rule'' as defined by the Congressional 
Review Act, codified at 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq. The rule will not result 
in: (1) An annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or more; (2) a 
major increase in costs or prices; or (3) significant adverse effects 
on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or 
the ability of United States-based companies to compete with foreign-
based companies. 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612, provides that 
whenever an agency promulgates a final rule after being required to 
publish a notice of proposed rulemaking under the Administrative 
Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. 553, the agency must prepare and make 
available for public comment a final regulatory flexibility analysis 
describing the impact of the rule on small entities, unless the head of 
the agency certifies that the rulemaking will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 5 U.S.C. 
604, 605. Accordingly, the Chairman of the Federal Maritime Commission 
certifies that the final rule will not have a significant impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. The regulated business entities 
that would be impacted by the rule are vessel-operating common 
carriers. The Commission has determined that VOCCs generally do not 
qualify as small entities under the guidelines of the Small Business 
Administration (SBA). See FMC Policy and Procedures Regarding Proper 
Consideration of Small Entities in Rulemakings (Feb. 7, 2003), 
available at https://www.fmc.gov/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/SBREFA_Guidelines_2003.pdf.

[[Page 38088]]

Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521) (PRA) 
requires an agency to seek and receive approval from the Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) before collecting information from the 
public. 44 U.S.C. 3507. The agency must submit collections of 
information in proposed rules to OMB in conjunction with the 
publication of the notice of proposed rulemaking. 5 CFR 1320.11.
    The information collection requirements in Part 530, Service 
Contracts, are currently authorized under OMB Control Number 3072-0065. 
In compliance with the PRA, the Commission submitted the proposed 
revised information collections to the Office of Management and Budget. 
Notice of the revised information collections was published in the 
Federal Register and public comments were invited. See 85 FR 8527 
(February 14, 2020). Comments received regarding the proposed changes, 
as well as the Commission's responses, are discussed above. No comments 
specifically addressed the revised information collection in Part 530, 
with the exception of a reference by one commenter to the cost savings 
cited in the NPRM as a basis for its strong support.
    As noted above, this final rule will eliminate a substantial and 
unnecessary regulatory burden on ocean carriers by removing the 
requirement to publish Statements of Essential Terms corresponding to 
individual service contract filings. The final rule also includes an 
option allowing, but not requiring, carriers to publish general service 
contract rules and notices, which most VOCCs currently include in their 
ET tariffs, thereby avoiding the need to amend hundreds of individual 
service contracts, should circumstances so warrant. As background, of 
the 147 VOCCs currently serving the U.S. trades, 71 do not file service 
contracts with the Commission, and thus would not be impacted by this 
rulemaking. Of the 76 VOCC that file service contracts, 25 filed less 
than ten original contracts thus far in FY 2020, with seven of those 
only filing one contract this fiscal year. Among VOCCs that utilize 
service contracts more extensively as a pricing mechanism, only 20 
filed over 100 original contracts thus far in FY 2020.
    With respect to the cost savings associated with eliminating the 
publication of Statements of Essential Terms corresponding to original 
service contracts and amendments, the Commission estimates the savings 
to VOCCs as roughly 41,048 man-hours, for an approximate savings of 
$1,987,133 annually.\1\ Service contract rules and notices in carrier 
automated tariff systems, on the other hand, are rarely published or 
revised, inasmuch as they govern a broad swath of carrier contracts, 
and many times are intended to quickly and efficiently address an ad 
hoc industry situation.\2\ Thus, in any given year, there may be no new 
service contract rules or notices published in a carrier's automated 
tariff system. The Commission observes that there are potential 
benefits associated with ensuring that carriers have the option to 
continue to publish these rules and notices as a separate part of the 
individual carrier's automated tariff system, thereby allowing a 
carrier to avoid revising hundreds of service contracts.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ The Commission's previous service contract rulemaking in 
Docket No. 16-05 estimated the time associated with preparation of 
an individual ET publication as 3 minutes. No commenters opposed 
that estimate. More recently, the Commission informally interviewed 
two major tariff publishers that file service contracts and publish 
ETs for multiple VOCCs. These tariff publishers estimated the time 
required to prepare an ETs to be 3 to 6 minutes. The larger of the 
two tariff publishers reported that their 3-minute preparation time 
was due to its proprietary technological efficiencies. The above-
referenced savings are based on the 3-minute preparation time 
estimate, using the Commission's most recent fiscal year's filing 
statistics for new contracts and amendments. In FY 2018, 47,962 new 
service contracts and 772,803 amendments were filed.
    \2\ As one example, a major ocean carrier published a blanket 
notice in its ET tariff applying to hundreds of its service 
contracts when it deployed an extra loader vessel to meet unexpected 
shipper demand. This notice allowed existing contract rates applying 
to a specifically named service string to also apply to cargo moving 
on the extra loader vessel, thereby eliminating the VOCC's burden of 
amending hundreds of service contracts.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Regarding the burden associated with the filing of service 
contracts with the Commission, a substantial majority of filers, 74 
percent, have recognized greater efficiencies by automating their 
service contract filing processes using the Commission's ``web 
services'' automated filing system. Using FY 2018 figures, the 
Commission estimates the remaining burden associated with service 
contract filing to be roughly 3,542 man-hours, or $402,088 annually.\3\ 
Inclusive of the burden associated with the optional publication of 
service contract rules under Sec.  530.12,\4\ the entire burden 
associated with this information collection is calculated as $3,482,351 
for contract filers, a substantial reduction.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ In the Commission's previous service contract rulemaking in 
Docket No. 16-05, each service contract filing (new or amendment) 
was estimated to take 3 minutes. Since that rulemaking, carriers and 
tariff publishers comprising the highest volume service contract 
filers have continued automating their filing processes. Filers that 
implemented the Commission's ``web services'' automated filing 
process have advised that minimal software programming was required 
to facilitate the automated upload of service contracts and 
amendments. Once automated, contract data can be transmitted into 
SERVCON in a matter of seconds, without need for human intervention.
    \4\ In our OMB filing related to this Information Collection, 
the burden of maintaining service contract rules and notices is 
estimated at 87 hours.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

National Environmental Policy Act

    The Commission's regulations categorically exclude certain 
rulemakings from any requirement to prepare an environmental assessment 
or an environmental impact statement because they do not increase or 
decrease air, water or noise pollution or the use of fossil fuels, 
recyclables, or energy. 46 CFR 504.4. The proposed rule amends the 
requirements related to the publication of Essential Terms associated 
with service contracts. This rulemaking thus falls within the 
categorical exclusion for actions related to the receipt service 
contracts (Sec.  504.4(a)(5)). Therefore, no environmental assessment 
or environmental impact statement is required.

Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    This rule meets the applicable standards in E.O. 12988 titled, 
``Civil Justice Reform,'' to minimize litigation, eliminate ambiguity, 
and reduce burden.

Regulation Identifier Number

    The Commission assigns a regulation identifier number (RIN) to each 
regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory 
and Deregulatory Actions (Unified Agenda). The Regulatory Information 
Service Center publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of 
each year. You may use the RIN contained in the heading at the 
beginning of this document to find this action in the Unified Agenda, 
at http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/eAgendaMain.

List of Subjects in 46 CFR Part 530

    Freight, Maritime carriers, Report and recordkeeping requirements.

    For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Federal Maritime 
Commission amends 46 CFR part 530 as follows:

PART 530--SERVICE CONTRACTS

0
 1. The authority citation for part 530 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 553; 46 U.S.C. 305, 40301-40306, 40501-
40503, 41307.


[[Page 38089]]



0
2. Amend Sec.  530.1 by revising the first sentence to read as follows:


Sec.  530.1  Purpose.

    The purpose of this part is to facilitate the filing of service 
contracts as required by section 8(c) of the Shipping Act of 1984 
(``the Act'') (46 U.S.C. 40502). * * *

0
3. Amend Sec.  530.3 by revising paragraphs (d) and (o) and removing 
paragraph (s) to read as follows:


Sec.  530.3  Definitions.

* * * * *
    (d) BTA means the Commission's Bureau of Trade Analysis or its 
successor bureau.
* * * * *
    (o) OIT means the Commission's Office of Information Technology.
* * * * *

0
 4. Amend Sec.  530.5 by revising paragraphs (a) and (c)(1) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  530.5  Duty to file.

    (a) The duty under this part to file service contracts, amendments, 
and notices shall be upon the individual carrier party or parties 
participating or eligible to participate in the service contract.
* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (1) Application. Authority to file or delegate the authority to 
file must be requested by a responsible official of the service 
contract carrier in writing by submitting to BTA the Registration Form 
(FMC-83) in Exhibit 1 to this part.
* * * * *

0
5. Amend Sec.  530.8 by revising paragraph (d) introductory text and 
removing paragraph (d)(4) to read as follows:


Sec.  530.8  Service contracts.

* * * * *
    (d) Other requirements. Every service contract filed with BTA shall 
include, as set forth in appendix A to this part:
* * * * *


Sec.  530.10  [Amended]

0
 6. Amend Sec.  530.10 by removing paragraph (f).

0
7. Revise subpart C heading to read as follows:

Subpart C--Publication of service contract rules and notices.

0
8. Revise Sec.  530.12 to read as follows:


Sec.  530.12  Rules and notices.

    (a) Location--(1) Generally. A statement of service contract rules 
and notices may be published as a separate part of the individual ocean 
common carrier's automated tariff system.
    (2) Multi-party service contracts. For service contracts in which 
more than one carrier participates or is eligible to participate, a 
statement of service contract rules and notices may be published:
    (i) If the service contract is entered into under the authority of 
a conference agreement, then in that conference's automated tariff 
system;
    (ii) If the service contract is entered into under the authority of 
a non-conference agreement, then in each of the participating or 
eligible-to-participate carriers' individual automated tariff systems, 
clearly indicating the relevant FMC-assigned agreement number.
    (b) Certainty of terms. A statement of service contract rules and 
notices described in paragraph (a) of this section may not:
    (1) Be uncertain, vague, or ambiguous; or
    (2) Make reference to terms not explicitly detailed in the 
statement of service contract rules and notices, unless those terms are 
contained in a publication widely available to the public and well 
known within the industry.
    (c) Agents. Common carriers, conferences, or agreements may use 
agents to meet their publication requirements under this part.
    (d) Commission listing. The Commission will publish on its website, 
www.fmc.gov, a listing of the locations of all service contract rules 
and notices.

0
9. Amend Sec.  530.13 by revising paragraph (b)(2) to read as follows:


Sec.  530.13  Exceptions and exemptions.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (2) Department of Defense cargo. Transportation of U.S. Department 
of Defense cargo moving in foreign commerce under terms and conditions 
negotiated and approved by the Surface Deployment and Distribution 
Command and published in a universal service contract. An exact copy of 
the universal service contract, including any amendments thereto, shall 
be filed with the Commission as soon as it becomes available.
* * * * *

0
10. Amend Sec.  530.15 by revising paragraph (c) to read as follows:


Sec.  530.15  Recordkeeping and audit.

* * * * *
    (c) Production for audit within 30 days of request. Every carrier 
or agreement shall, upon written request of the FMC's Director, Bureau 
of Enforcement, any Area Representative or the Director, Bureau of 
Trade Analysis, submit copies of requested original service contracts 
or their associated records within thirty (30) days of the date of the 
request.
* * * * *

Appendix A to Part 530 [Amended]

0
11. In Appendix A revise all references to ``BTCL'' to read ``BTA'' and 
revise all references to ``OIRM'' to read ``OIT''.

    By the Commission.
Rachel E. Dickon,
Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2020-13045 Filed 6-24-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE P