Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Extension, 46254-46256 [2021-17662]

Download as PDF 46254 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 157 / Wednesday, August 18, 2021 / Notices (d) Metrics 4. FY22 Budget Review and Approval 5. Participant Survey Report SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Closed Session 6. Information covered under 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B) and 552b(c)(10). Authority: 5 U.S.C. 552b (e)(1). Dated: August 12, 2021. Dharmesh Vashee, General Counsel, Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board. [FR Doc. 2021–17680 Filed 8–17–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Extension Federal Trade Commission. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) is seeking public comment on its proposal to extend for an additional three years the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) clearance for information collection requirements contained in the rules and regulations under the Pay-Per-Call Rule (Rule). That clearance expires on November 30, 2021. DATES: Comments must be received on or before October 18, 2021. ADDRESSES: Interested parties may file a comment online or on paper by following the instructions in the Request for Comments part of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below. Write ‘‘Pay-Per-Call Rule; PRA Comment: FTC File No. P072108’’ on your comment, and file your comment online at https://www.regulations.gov by following the instructions on the webbased form. If you prefer to file your comment on paper, mail your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite CC–5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20580, or deliver your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, Constitution Center, 400 7th Street SW, 5th Floor, Suite 5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20024. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: P. Connell McNulty, Attorney, Division of Marketing Practices, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Federal Trade Commission, Mail Code CC–8528, 600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20580, (202) 326–2061. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:34 Aug 17, 2021 Jkt 253001 Title: Trade Regulation Rule Pursuant to the Telephone Disclosure and Dispute Resolution Act of 1992 (‘‘PayPer-Call Rule’’), 16 CFR part 308. OMB Control Number: 3084–0102. Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection. Abstract: The existing reporting and disclosure requirements of the Pay-PerCall Rule are mandated by the Telephone Disclosure and Dispute Resolution Act of 1992 (TDDRA) to help prevent unfair and deceptive acts and practices in the advertising and operation of pay-per-call services and in the collection of charges for telephonebilled purchases. The information obtained by the Commission pursuant to the reporting requirement is used for law enforcement purposes. The disclosure requirements ensure that consumers are told about the costs of using a pay-per-call service, that they will not be liable for unauthorized nontoll charges on their telephone bills, and how to deal with disputes about telephone-billed purchases. Likely Respondents: telecommunications common carriers (subject to the reporting requirement only, unless acting as a billing entity), information providers (vendors) offering one or more pay-per-call services or programs, and billing entities. Estimated Annual Hours Burden: 1,029,570 hours (18 + 1,029,552) Reporting: 18 hours for reporting by common carriers Disclosure: 1,029,552 [(21,240 hours for advertising by vendors + 21,732 hours for preamble disclosure which applies to every pay-per-call service + 7,080 burden hours for telephone-billed charges in billing statements (applies to vendors; applies to common carriers if acting as billing entity) + 11,500 burden hours for dispute resolution procedures in billing statements (applies to billing entities) + 968,000 hours for disclosures related to consumers reporting a billing error (applies to billing entities)] Estimated annual cost burden: $50,456,136 (solely relating to labor costs).1 1 Non-labor (e.g., capital/other start-up) costs are generally subsumed in activities otherwise undertaken in the ordinary course of business (e.g., business records from which only existing information must be reported to the Commission, pay-per-call advertisements or audiotext to which cost or other disclosures are added, etc.). To the extent that entities incur operating or maintenance expenses, or purchase outside services to satisfy the Rule’s requirements, staff believe those expenses are also included in (or, if contracted out, would be comparable to) the annual burden hour and cost estimates provided below (where such costs are PO 00000 Frm 00081 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 As required by section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A), the FTC is providing this opportunity for public comment before requesting that OMB extend the existing clearance for the information collection requirements contained in the Commission’s Pay-PerCall Rule. Burden Estimates Brief Description of the Need for and Proposed Use of the Information The existing reporting and disclosure requirements are mandated by the TDDRA to help prevent unfair and deceptive acts and practices in the advertising and operation of pay-percall services and in the collection of charges for telephone-billed purchases. The information obtained by the Commission pursuant to the reporting requirement is used for law enforcement purposes. The disclosure requirements ensure that consumers are told about the costs of using a pay-per-call service, that they will not be liable for unauthorized non-toll charges on their telephone bills, and how to deal with disputes about telephone-billed purchases. Likely Respondents and Their Estimated Number Respondents are telecommunications common carriers (subject to the reporting requirement only, unless acting as a billing entity), information providers (vendors) offering one or more pay-per-call services or programs, and billing entities. Staff estimates that there are 6 common carriers, approximately 5,900 vendors, and approximately 2,300 possible billing entities. The FTC seeks public comment or data on these estimates and those stated below. Estimated annual reporting and disclosure burden: 1,029,570 hours; $50,456,136 in associated labor costs. The burden hour estimate for each reporting and disclosure requirement has been multiplied by a ‘‘blended’’ wage rate (expressed in dollars per hour), based on the particular skill mix needed to carry out that requirement, to determine its total annual cost. The blended rate calculations are based on the following skill categories and average wage rates and/or labor costs: $123/hour for professional (attorney) services; $20/hour for skilled clerical workers; $46/hour for computer programmers; and $60/hour for management time. These figures are averages, based on the most currently available Bureau of Labor Statistics (‘‘BLS’’) cost figures posted online. FTC labor-related), or are otherwise included in the ordinary cost of doing business (regarding non-labor costs). E:\FR\FM\18AUN1.SGM 18AUN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 157 / Wednesday, August 18, 2021 / Notices staff calculated labor costs by applying appropriate hourly cost figures to the burden hours discussed further below. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES (1) Reporting Burden (Applies to Common Carriers) The Rule provides that common carriers must make available to the Commission, upon written request, any records and financial information maintained by such carrier relating to the arrangements between the carrier and any vendor or service bureau (other than for the provision of local exchange service). See 16 CFR 308.6. Staff believes that the resulting burden on this segment of the industry will be minimal, since OMB’s definition of ‘‘burden’’ for PRA purposes excludes any business effort that would be expended regardless of a regulatory requirement. 5 CFR 1320.3(b)(2). Because this reporting requirement permits staff to seek information limited to that which is already maintained by the carriers, the only burden would be the time an entity expends to compile and provide the information to the Commission. Because the Commission has seldom needed to rely on this requirement, staff estimates the annual time for reporting at 3 hours per entity. In obtaining OMB clearance for this reporting requirement in 2015, staff estimated a total reporting burden of 18 hours. For 2021, staff is maintaining the total burden estimate of 18 hours, based on an average estimate of 3 hours expended by 6 common carriers. Using a $56/hour blended wage rate, the FTC now estimates an annual cost of $1,008. (2) Disclosure Burden (a) Advertising (applies to vendors). FTC staff estimates that the annual burden on the industry for the Rule’s advertising disclosure requirements is 21,240 hours. The estimate reflects the burden on approximately 5,900 vendors who must make cost disclosures for all pay-per-call services and additional disclosures if the advertisement is (a) directed to individuals under 18 or (b) for certain pay-per-call services. Because of continued industry changes and the fact that the Commission has seldom needed to rely on this requirement, staff is retaining the estimated percentage of advertising both directed to individuals under 18 and relating to certain other pay-per-call services to 20 percent of overall pay-percall services. FTC staff estimates that each disclosure mandated by the Rule requires approximately one hour of compliance time. The total estimated annual cost of these burden hours is $1,040,760, applying a blended wage rate of $49/hour. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:34 Aug 17, 2021 Jkt 253001 (b) The Rule’s preamble disclosure (applies to every pay-per-call service). To comply with the Act, the Pay-PerCall Rule also requires that every payper-call service be preceded by a free preamble and that four different disclosures be made in each preamble. Additionally, preambles to sweepstakes pay-per-call services and services that offer information on federal programs must provide additional disclosures. Each preamble need only be prepared one time, unless the cost or other information is changed. There is no additional burden on the vendor to make the disclosures for each telephone call, because the preambles are taped and play automatically when a caller dials the pay-per-call number. Staff believes that the industry has had at least a 12 percent reduction in size since 2015 (when there were an estimated 20,580 pay-per-call services). Accordingly, staff now estimates that there are no more than 18,110 advertised pay-per-call services. As with advertising disclosures, preambles for certain pay-per-call services require additional preamble disclosures. Consistent with the estimates of advertised pay-per-call services discussed above, staff estimates that 20 percent of all such pay-per-call services (3,622) relating to certain types of pay-per-call services would require such additional disclosures. Staff estimates that it would require no more than one hour to draft each type of disclosure because the disclosures applicable to the preamble closely approximate in content and volume the advertising disclosures discussed above. Accordingly, staff estimates a total of 21,732 burden hours (18,110 + 3,622) to comply with these requirements. At one hour each, cumulative labor cost associated with these disclosures is $1,064,868, using a blended wage rate of $49/hour (i.e., the same blended rate used for advertising disclosures). (c) Telephone-billed charges in billing statements (applies to vendors; applies to common carriers if acting as billing entity). Section 308.5(j) of the Rule, 16 CFR 308.5(j), requires that vendors ensure that certain disclosures appear on each billing statement that contains a charge for a call to a pay-per-call service. Because these disclosures appear on telephone bills already generated by the local telephone companies, and because the carriers are already subject to nearly identical requirements pursuant to the FCC’s rules, FTC staff estimated that the burden to comply would be minimal. At most, the burden on the vendor would be limited to spot checking telephone bills to ensure that the charges are PO 00000 Frm 00082 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 46255 displayed in the manner required by the Rule. As it had in the 2015 PRA submission, FTC staff estimates that only 10 percent of vendors would monitor billing statements in this manner and that it would take 12 hours per year to conduct such checks. Using the total estimated number of vendors (5,900), this results in a total of 7,080 burden hours. The total annual cost would be at most $354,000, using a blended rate of $50/hour. (d) Dispute resolution procedures in billing statements (applies to billing entities). This disclosure requirement is set forth in 16 CFR 308.7(c). The blended rate used for these disclosures is $49/hour. FTC staff previously estimated that the billing entities would spend approximately 5 hours each to review, revise, and provide the disclosures on an annual basis. The estimated hour burden for the annual notice component of this requirement is 11,500 burden hours (based on 2,300 possible billing entities each requiring 5 hours), or a total cost of $563,500. (e) Further disclosures related to consumers reporting a billing error (applies to billing entities). As in the 2015 PRA submission for this Rule, FTC staff estimates that the incremental disclosure obligations related to consumers reporting a billing error under section 308.7(d) requires, on average, about one hour per each billing error. Previously, staff projected that approximately 5 percent of an estimated 22,001,000 calls made to pay-per-call services each year involves such a billing error. The staff is now reducing its prior estimate of the number of those calls by approximately 12 percent (to 19,360,880 calls) to reflect recent changes in the amount of pay-per-call services and their billing. Assuming the same apportionment (5 percent) of overall calls to pay-per-call services, this amounts to 968,000 hours, cumulatively. Applying the $49/hour blended wage rate, the estimated annual cost is $47,432,000. Request for Comments Pursuant to Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, the FTC invites comments on: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the E:\FR\FM\18AUN1.SGM 18AUN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 46256 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 157 / Wednesday, August 18, 2021 / Notices burden of maintaining records and providing disclosures to consumers. All comments must be received on or before October 18, 2021. You can file a comment online or on paper. For the FTC to consider your comment, we must receive it on or before October 18, 2021. Write ‘‘Pay-PerCall Rule; PRA Comment: FTC File No. P072108’’ on your comment. Your comment—including your name and your state—will be placed on the public record of this proceeding, including the https://www.regulations.gov website. Due to the public health emergency in response to the COVID–19 outbreak and the agency’s heightened security screening, postal mail addressed to the Commission will be subject to delay. We encourage you to submit your comments online through the https:// www.regulations.gov website. If you prefer to file your comment on paper, write ‘‘Pay-Per-Call Rule; PRA Comment: FTC File No. P072108’’ on your comment and on the envelope, and mail your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite CC– 5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20580; or deliver your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, Constitution Center, 400 7th Street SW, 5th Floor, Suite 5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20024. If possible, submit your paper comment to the Commission by courier or overnight service. Because your comment will become publicly available at https:// www.regulations.gov, you are solely responsible for making sure that your comment does not include any sensitive or confidential information. In particular, your comment should not include any sensitive personal information, such as your or anyone else’s Social Security number; date of birth; driver’s license number or other state identification number, or foreign country equivalent; passport number; financial account number; or credit or debit card number. You are also solely responsible for making sure that your comment does not include any sensitive health information, such as medical records or other individually identifiable health information. In addition, your comment should not include any ‘‘trade secret or any commercial or financial information which . . . . is privileged or confidential’’—as provided by Section 6(f) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. 46(f), and FTC Rule 4.10(a)(2), 16 CFR 4.10(a)(2)— including in particular competitively sensitive information such as costs, VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:34 Aug 17, 2021 Jkt 253001 sales statistics, inventories, formulas, patterns, devices, manufacturing processes, or customer names. Comments containing material for which confidential treatment is requested must be filed in paper form, must be clearly labeled ‘‘Confidential,’’ and must comply with FTC Rule 4.9(c). In particular, the written request for confidential treatment that accompanies the comment must include the factual and legal basis for the request, and must identify the specific portions of the comment to be withheld from the public record. See FTC Rule 4.9(c). Your comment will be kept confidential only if the General Counsel grants your request in accordance with the law and the public interest. Once your comment has been posted publicly at www.regulations.gov, we cannot redact or remove your comment unless you submit a confidentiality request that meets the requirements for such treatment under FTC Rule 4.9(c), and the General Counsel grants that request. The FTC Act and other laws that the Commission administers permit the collection of public comments to consider and use in this proceeding, as appropriate. The Commission will consider all timely and responsive public comments that it receives on or before October 18, 2021. For information on the Commission’s privacy policy, including routine uses permitted by the Privacy Act, see https://www.ftc.gov/site-information/ privacy-policy. Josephine Liu, Assistant General Counsel for Legal Counsel. [FR Doc. 2021–17662 Filed 8–17–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6750–01–P DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [Docket No. CDC–2021–0089] Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). ACTION: Notice of meeting and request for comment. AGENCY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), announces the following meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). This meeting is open to the SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00083 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 public. The meeting will be webcast live via the World Wide Web. A notice of this ACIP meeting has also been posted on CDC’s ACIP website at: https:// www.cdc.gov/vaccines/acip/. In addition, CDC has sent notice of this ACIP meeting by email to those who subscribe to receive email updates about ACIP. DATES: The meeting will be held on August 24, 2021, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., EDT (dates and times subject to change), see the ACIP website for updates: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/ acip/. The public may submit written comments from August 18, 2021 through August 24, 2021. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. CDC–2021– 0089 by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Mail: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road NE, MS H24–8, Atlanta, Georgia 30329– 4027, Attn: August 24, 2021 ACIP Meeting. Instructions: All submissions received must include the Agency name and Docket Number. All relevant comments received in conformance with the https://www.regulations.gov suitability policy will be posted without change to https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to https://www.regulations.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Stephanie Thomas, ACIP Committee Management Specialist, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, 1600 Clifton Road NE, MS–H24–8, Atlanta, Georgia 30329– 4027; Telephone: (404) 639–8367; Email: ACIP@cdc.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In accordance with 41 CFR 102–3.150(b), less than 15 calendar days’ notice is being given for this meeting due to the exceptional circumstances of the COVID–19 pandemic and rapidly evolving COVID–19 vaccine development and regulatory processes. A notice of this ACIP meeting has also been posted on CDC’s ACIP website at: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/acip/ index.html. In addition, CDC has sent notice of this ACIP meeting by email to those who subscribe to receive email updates about ACIP. Purpose: The committee is charged with advising the Director, CDC, on the use of immunizing agents. In addition, under 42 U.S.C. 1396s, the committee is mandated to establish and periodically E:\FR\FM\18AUN1.SGM 18AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 157 (Wednesday, August 18, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 46254-46256]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-17662]


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FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION


Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; 
Comment Request; Extension

AGENCY: Federal Trade Commission.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), 
the Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) is seeking public 
comment on its proposal to extend for an additional three years the 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) clearance for information 
collection requirements contained in the rules and regulations under 
the Pay-Per-Call Rule (Rule). That clearance expires on November 30, 
2021.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before October 18, 2021.

ADDRESSES: Interested parties may file a comment online or on paper by 
following the instructions in the Request for Comments part of the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below. Write ``Pay-Per-Call Rule; PRA 
Comment: FTC File No. P072108'' on your comment, and file your comment 
online at https://www.regulations.gov by following the instructions on 
the web-based form. If you prefer to file your comment on paper, mail 
your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office 
of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite CC-5610 (Annex J), 
Washington, DC 20580, or deliver your comment to the following address: 
Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, Constitution Center, 
400 7th Street SW, 5th Floor, Suite 5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 
20024.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: P. Connell McNulty, Attorney, Division 
of Marketing Practices, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Federal Trade 
Commission, Mail Code CC-8528, 600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 
20580, (202) 326-2061.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Title: Trade Regulation Rule Pursuant to the Telephone Disclosure 
and Dispute Resolution Act of 1992 (``Pay-Per-Call Rule''), 16 CFR part 
308.
    OMB Control Number: 3084-0102.
    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.
    Abstract: The existing reporting and disclosure requirements of the 
Pay-Per-Call Rule are mandated by the Telephone Disclosure and Dispute 
Resolution Act of 1992 (TDDRA) to help prevent unfair and deceptive 
acts and practices in the advertising and operation of pay-per-call 
services and in the collection of charges for telephone-billed 
purchases. The information obtained by the Commission pursuant to the 
reporting requirement is used for law enforcement purposes. The 
disclosure requirements ensure that consumers are told about the costs 
of using a pay-per-call service, that they will not be liable for 
unauthorized non-toll charges on their telephone bills, and how to deal 
with disputes about telephone-billed purchases.
    Likely Respondents: telecommunications common carriers (subject to 
the reporting requirement only, unless acting as a billing entity), 
information providers (vendors) offering one or more pay-per-call 
services or programs, and billing entities.
    Estimated Annual Hours Burden: 1,029,570 hours (18 + 1,029,552)

Reporting: 18 hours for reporting by common carriers
Disclosure: 1,029,552 [(21,240 hours for advertising by vendors + 
21,732 hours for preamble disclosure which applies to every pay-per-
call service + 7,080 burden hours for telephone-billed charges in 
billing statements (applies to vendors; applies to common carriers if 
acting as billing entity) + 11,500 burden hours for dispute resolution 
procedures in billing statements (applies to billing entities) + 
968,000 hours for disclosures related to consumers reporting a billing 
error (applies to billing entities)]
    Estimated annual cost burden: $50,456,136 (solely relating to labor 
costs).\1\
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    \1\ Non-labor (e.g., capital/other start-up) costs are generally 
subsumed in activities otherwise undertaken in the ordinary course 
of business (e.g., business records from which only existing 
information must be reported to the Commission, pay-per-call 
advertisements or audiotext to which cost or other disclosures are 
added, etc.). To the extent that entities incur operating or 
maintenance expenses, or purchase outside services to satisfy the 
Rule's requirements, staff believe those expenses are also included 
in (or, if contracted out, would be comparable to) the annual burden 
hour and cost estimates provided below (where such costs are labor-
related), or are otherwise included in the ordinary cost of doing 
business (regarding non-labor costs).

    As required by section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, 44 U.S.C. 
3506(c)(2)(A), the FTC is providing this opportunity for public comment 
before requesting that OMB extend the existing clearance for the 
information collection requirements contained in the Commission's Pay-
Per-Call Rule.

Burden Estimates

Brief Description of the Need for and Proposed Use of the Information

    The existing reporting and disclosure requirements are mandated by 
the TDDRA to help prevent unfair and deceptive acts and practices in 
the advertising and operation of pay-per-call services and in the 
collection of charges for telephone-billed purchases. The information 
obtained by the Commission pursuant to the reporting requirement is 
used for law enforcement purposes. The disclosure requirements ensure 
that consumers are told about the costs of using a pay-per-call 
service, that they will not be liable for unauthorized non-toll charges 
on their telephone bills, and how to deal with disputes about 
telephone-billed purchases.

Likely Respondents and Their Estimated Number

    Respondents are telecommunications common carriers (subject to the 
reporting requirement only, unless acting as a billing entity), 
information providers (vendors) offering one or more pay-per-call 
services or programs, and billing entities. Staff estimates that there 
are 6 common carriers, approximately 5,900 vendors, and approximately 
2,300 possible billing entities. The FTC seeks public comment or data 
on these estimates and those stated below.
    Estimated annual reporting and disclosure burden: 1,029,570 hours; 
$50,456,136 in associated labor costs.
    The burden hour estimate for each reporting and disclosure 
requirement has been multiplied by a ``blended'' wage rate (expressed 
in dollars per hour), based on the particular skill mix needed to carry 
out that requirement, to determine its total annual cost. The blended 
rate calculations are based on the following skill categories and 
average wage rates and/or labor costs: $123/hour for professional 
(attorney) services; $20/hour for skilled clerical workers; $46/hour 
for computer programmers; and $60/hour for management time. These 
figures are averages, based on the most currently available Bureau of 
Labor Statistics (``BLS'') cost figures posted online. FTC

[[Page 46255]]

staff calculated labor costs by applying appropriate hourly cost 
figures to the burden hours discussed further below.
(1) Reporting Burden (Applies to Common Carriers)
    The Rule provides that common carriers must make available to the 
Commission, upon written request, any records and financial information 
maintained by such carrier relating to the arrangements between the 
carrier and any vendor or service bureau (other than for the provision 
of local exchange service). See 16 CFR 308.6. Staff believes that the 
resulting burden on this segment of the industry will be minimal, since 
OMB's definition of ``burden'' for PRA purposes excludes any business 
effort that would be expended regardless of a regulatory requirement. 5 
CFR 1320.3(b)(2). Because this reporting requirement permits staff to 
seek information limited to that which is already maintained by the 
carriers, the only burden would be the time an entity expends to 
compile and provide the information to the Commission. Because the 
Commission has seldom needed to rely on this requirement, staff 
estimates the annual time for reporting at 3 hours per entity.
    In obtaining OMB clearance for this reporting requirement in 2015, 
staff estimated a total reporting burden of 18 hours. For 2021, staff 
is maintaining the total burden estimate of 18 hours, based on an 
average estimate of 3 hours expended by 6 common carriers. Using a $56/
hour blended wage rate, the FTC now estimates an annual cost of $1,008.
(2) Disclosure Burden
    (a) Advertising (applies to vendors). FTC staff estimates that the 
annual burden on the industry for the Rule's advertising disclosure 
requirements is 21,240 hours. The estimate reflects the burden on 
approximately 5,900 vendors who must make cost disclosures for all pay-
per-call services and additional disclosures if the advertisement is 
(a) directed to individuals under 18 or (b) for certain pay-per-call 
services. Because of continued industry changes and the fact that the 
Commission has seldom needed to rely on this requirement, staff is 
retaining the estimated percentage of advertising both directed to 
individuals under 18 and relating to certain other pay-per-call 
services to 20 percent of overall pay-per-call services. FTC staff 
estimates that each disclosure mandated by the Rule requires 
approximately one hour of compliance time. The total estimated annual 
cost of these burden hours is $1,040,760, applying a blended wage rate 
of $49/hour.
    (b) The Rule's preamble disclosure (applies to every pay-per-call 
service). To comply with the Act, the Pay-Per-Call Rule also requires 
that every pay-per-call service be preceded by a free preamble and that 
four different disclosures be made in each preamble. Additionally, 
preambles to sweepstakes pay-per-call services and services that offer 
information on federal programs must provide additional disclosures. 
Each preamble need only be prepared one time, unless the cost or other 
information is changed. There is no additional burden on the vendor to 
make the disclosures for each telephone call, because the preambles are 
taped and play automatically when a caller dials the pay-per-call 
number.
    Staff believes that the industry has had at least a 12 percent 
reduction in size since 2015 (when there were an estimated 20,580 pay-
per-call services). Accordingly, staff now estimates that there are no 
more than 18,110 advertised pay-per-call services.
    As with advertising disclosures, preambles for certain pay-per-call 
services require additional preamble disclosures. Consistent with the 
estimates of advertised pay-per-call services discussed above, staff 
estimates that 20 percent of all such pay-per-call services (3,622) 
relating to certain types of pay-per-call services would require such 
additional disclosures. Staff estimates that it would require no more 
than one hour to draft each type of disclosure because the disclosures 
applicable to the preamble closely approximate in content and volume 
the advertising disclosures discussed above. Accordingly, staff 
estimates a total of 21,732 burden hours (18,110 + 3,622) to comply 
with these requirements. At one hour each, cumulative labor cost 
associated with these disclosures is $1,064,868, using a blended wage 
rate of $49/hour (i.e., the same blended rate used for advertising 
disclosures).
    (c) Telephone-billed charges in billing statements (applies to 
vendors; applies to common carriers if acting as billing entity). 
Section 308.5(j) of the Rule, 16 CFR 308.5(j), requires that vendors 
ensure that certain disclosures appear on each billing statement that 
contains a charge for a call to a pay-per-call service. Because these 
disclosures appear on telephone bills already generated by the local 
telephone companies, and because the carriers are already subject to 
nearly identical requirements pursuant to the FCC's rules, FTC staff 
estimated that the burden to comply would be minimal. At most, the 
burden on the vendor would be limited to spot checking telephone bills 
to ensure that the charges are displayed in the manner required by the 
Rule.
    As it had in the 2015 PRA submission, FTC staff estimates that only 
10 percent of vendors would monitor billing statements in this manner 
and that it would take 12 hours per year to conduct such checks. Using 
the total estimated number of vendors (5,900), this results in a total 
of 7,080 burden hours. The total annual cost would be at most $354,000, 
using a blended rate of $50/hour.
    (d) Dispute resolution procedures in billing statements (applies to 
billing entities). This disclosure requirement is set forth in 16 CFR 
308.7(c). The blended rate used for these disclosures is $49/hour. FTC 
staff previously estimated that the billing entities would spend 
approximately 5 hours each to review, revise, and provide the 
disclosures on an annual basis. The estimated hour burden for the 
annual notice component of this requirement is 11,500 burden hours 
(based on 2,300 possible billing entities each requiring 5 hours), or a 
total cost of $563,500.
    (e) Further disclosures related to consumers reporting a billing 
error (applies to billing entities).
    As in the 2015 PRA submission for this Rule, FTC staff estimates 
that the incremental disclosure obligations related to consumers 
reporting a billing error under section 308.7(d) requires, on average, 
about one hour per each billing error. Previously, staff projected that 
approximately 5 percent of an estimated 22,001,000 calls made to pay-
per-call services each year involves such a billing error. The staff is 
now reducing its prior estimate of the number of those calls by 
approximately 12 percent (to 19,360,880 calls) to reflect recent 
changes in the amount of pay-per-call services and their billing. 
Assuming the same apportionment (5 percent) of overall calls to pay-
per-call services, this amounts to 968,000 hours, cumulatively. 
Applying the $49/hour blended wage rate, the estimated annual cost is 
$47,432,000.

Request for Comments

    Pursuant to Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, the FTC invites 
comments on: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is 
necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, 
including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the 
accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed 
collection of information, including the validity of the methodology 
and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and 
clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize 
the

[[Page 46256]]

burden of maintaining records and providing disclosures to consumers. 
All comments must be received on or before October 18, 2021.
    You can file a comment online or on paper. For the FTC to consider 
your comment, we must receive it on or before October 18, 2021. Write 
``Pay-Per-Call Rule; PRA Comment: FTC File No. P072108'' on your 
comment. Your comment--including your name and your state--will be 
placed on the public record of this proceeding, including the https://www.regulations.gov website.
    Due to the public health emergency in response to the COVID-19 
outbreak and the agency's heightened security screening, postal mail 
addressed to the Commission will be subject to delay. We encourage you 
to submit your comments online through the https://www.regulations.gov 
website.
    If you prefer to file your comment on paper, write ``Pay-Per-Call 
Rule; PRA Comment: FTC File No. P072108'' on your comment and on the 
envelope, and mail your comment to the following address: Federal Trade 
Commission, Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite 
CC-5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20580; or deliver your comment to the 
following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, 
Constitution Center, 400 7th Street SW, 5th Floor, Suite 5610 (Annex 
J), Washington, DC 20024. If possible, submit your paper comment to the 
Commission by courier or overnight service.
    Because your comment will become publicly available at https://www.regulations.gov, you are solely responsible for making sure that 
your comment does not include any sensitive or confidential 
information. In particular, your comment should not include any 
sensitive personal information, such as your or anyone else's Social 
Security number; date of birth; driver's license number or other state 
identification number, or foreign country equivalent; passport number; 
financial account number; or credit or debit card number. You are also 
solely responsible for making sure that your comment does not include 
any sensitive health information, such as medical records or other 
individually identifiable health information. In addition, your comment 
should not include any ``trade secret or any commercial or financial 
information which . . . . is privileged or confidential''--as provided 
by Section 6(f) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. 46(f), and FTC Rule 
4.10(a)(2), 16 CFR 4.10(a)(2)--including in particular competitively 
sensitive information such as costs, sales statistics, inventories, 
formulas, patterns, devices, manufacturing processes, or customer 
names.
    Comments containing material for which confidential treatment is 
requested must be filed in paper form, must be clearly labeled 
``Confidential,'' and must comply with FTC Rule 4.9(c). In particular, 
the written request for confidential treatment that accompanies the 
comment must include the factual and legal basis for the request, and 
must identify the specific portions of the comment to be withheld from 
the public record. See FTC Rule 4.9(c). Your comment will be kept 
confidential only if the General Counsel grants your request in 
accordance with the law and the public interest. Once your comment has 
been posted publicly at www.regulations.gov, we cannot redact or remove 
your comment unless you submit a confidentiality request that meets the 
requirements for such treatment under FTC Rule 4.9(c), and the General 
Counsel grants that request.
    The FTC Act and other laws that the Commission administers permit 
the collection of public comments to consider and use in this 
proceeding, as appropriate. The Commission will consider all timely and 
responsive public comments that it receives on or before October 18, 
2021. For information on the Commission's privacy policy, including 
routine uses permitted by the Privacy Act, see https://www.ftc.gov/site-information/privacy-policy.

Josephine Liu,
Assistant General Counsel for Legal Counsel.
[FR Doc. 2021-17662 Filed 8-17-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6750-01-P