Provincial Advisory Committees
The Department of Agriculture, in consultation with the Department of the Interior, intends to renew the Provincial Advisory Committees (PACs) for the 12 provinces in California, Oregon, and Washington. This renewal is necessary and in the public interest due to the continued need for the PACs to provide advice on coordinating the implementation of the Record of Decision of April 13, 1994, for Management of Habitat for Late-Successional and Old-Growth Forest Related Species Within the Range of the Northern Spotted Owl. The PACs also provide advice and recommendations to promote integration and coordination of forest management activities between Federal and non- Federal entities.
Agricultural Inspector Uniform Allowance
The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA, is changing the colors of its employees' basic uniform to ensure our inspectors are easy to distinguish from personnel of other Federal agencies who are stationed at ports of entry. To offset the one-time cost to uniformed employees who must replace their existing uniforms, we are increasing, for one year only, our maximum uniform allowance rate for fiscal year 2006. We are publishing this notice in accordance with the civil service regulations regarding uniform allowances, which provide, among other things, that annual uniform allowances greater than $400 require public notice and comment.
Marketing Order Regulating the Handling of Pears Grown in Oregon and Washington; Control Committee Rules and Regulation
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is adding provisions to the Code of Federal Regulations that include rules and regulations used in administering the marketing order regulating the handling of pears grown in Oregon and Washington. Inadvertently, SubpartControl Committee Rules and Regulations was removed in May 2005 when the marketing order was amended.
Hass Avocado Promotion, Research, and Information Order: Definition of “Substantial Activity”
This document withdraws a proposed rule published in the Federal Register March 18, 2003, which would have terminated the definition of ``substantial activity'' under the Hass Avocado Promotion, Research, and Information Order (Order). The proposed action was expected to increase the number of importers eligible to serve on the Hass Avocado Board (Board). Based on comments received and other available information, termination of the definition would not be appropriate at this time.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Monitoring Trends in the Public Health Workforce Survey
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is publishing for public comment a summary of a proposed information collection. FNS wishes to monitor trends in education and training, work experience, areas of practice, and training needs of the public health and community nutrition workforce at the State and local government levels. A descriptive profile will assist FNS to determine the extent to which the current and future workforce has the necessary training to administer the WIC Program, for which FNS is responsible.
Meeting of the Land Between The Lakes Advisory Board
The Land Between The Lakes Advisory Board will hold a meeting on Thursday, November 3, 2005. Notice of this meeting is given under the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. 2. The meeting agenda includes the following: (1) Welcome/Introductions/Agenda. (2) Panel Discussion Between Incoming/Outgoing Members. (3) Recognition of Outgoing Members. (4) Orientation for Incoming Members. (5) Introduction of Nature Watch Demonstration Area Topic. The meeting is open to the public. Written comments are invited and may be mailed to: William P. Lisowsky, Area Supervisor, Land Between The Lakes, 100 Van Morgan Drive, Golden Pond, Kentucky 42211. Written comments received at Land Between The Lakes will be provided to the members.
Glenn/Colusa County Resource Advisory Committee
The Glenn/Colusa County Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Willows, California. Agenda items to be covered include: (1) Introductions, (2) Approval of Minutes, (3) Public Comment, (4) Project Proposal/Possible Action, (5) Web site Update, (6) General Discussion, (7) Next Agenda.
Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture; Nominations
The Agricultural Research Service is requesting nominations for qualified persons to serve as members of the Secretary's Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture (AC21). The charge for the AC21 is two-fold: to examine the long-term impacts of biotechnology on the U.S. food and agriculture system and USDA; and to provide guidance to USDA on pressing individual issues, identified by the Office of the Secretary, related to the application of biotechnology in agriculture.
Avocados Grown in South Florida; Changes in Container and Reporting Requirements
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting, as a final rule, without change, an interim final rule that changed the container and reporting requirements prescribed under the marketing order for avocados grown in South Florida. The marketing order regulates the handling of avocados grown in South Florida and is administered locally by the Avocado Administrative Committee (Committee). This rule continues in effect the action prohibiting the handling of fresh market avocados in 20 bushel plastic field bins to destinations inside the production area. This rule also continues in effect the action requiring that handlers provide, at the time of inspection, information regarding the number of avocados packed per container (count per container). These changes are expected to help reduce packing costs and facilitate the distribution of useful marketing information.
Environmental Impact Statement; Petition for Deregulation of Genetically Engineered Glyphosate-Tolerant Creeping Bentgrass; Request for Additional Information
We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is seeking information to develop an environmental impact statement as part of its consideration of a petition received from Monsanto Company and The Scotts Company. The petition requests a determination of nonregulated status for engineered creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera) that is glyphosate tolerant. We are preparing this environmental impact statement in accordance with 7 CFR 372.5 and 40 CFR 1501.3 and 1501.4. We are seeking specific information about glyphosate use to control grasses. We are primarily interested in the details of those programs that focus on weed management in nonagricultural lands.
Milk in the Appalachian and Southeast Marketing Areas; Order Amending the Orders
This partial final rule amends the Appalachian and Southeast marketing orders. Specifically, the final rule expands the Appalachian milk marketing area, eliminates the ability to simultaneously pool the same milk on the Appalachian or Southeast order and on a State-operated milk order that has marketwide pooling, and amends the transportation credit provisions of the Southeast and Appalachian orders. The amendments are based on record evidence of a public hearing held February 2004. More than the required number of dairy farmers approved the issuance of the amended orders.
Notice of Southwest Idaho Resource Advisory Committee Meeting
Pursuant to the authorities in the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Public Law 92-463) and under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-393), the Boise and Payette National Forests' Southwest Idaho Resource Advisory Committee will conduct a business meeting, which is open to the public.
Notice of Resource Advisory Committee Meeting
Pursuant to the authorities in the Federal Advisory Committees Act (Pub. L. 92-463) and under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 (Pub. L. 106-393) the Modoc National Forest's Modoc Resource Advisory Committee will meet Monday, November 7, 2005, January 9, 2006 and February 6, 2006 in Alturas, California for business meetings. The meetings are open to the public.
Notice To Reinstate and Revise a Previously Approved Information Collection
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intention of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to reinstate and revise a previously approved information collection. The collected information will help NRCS to match the skills of individuals who are applying for volunteer work that will further the Agency's mission. Information will be collected from potential volunteers who are 14 years of age or older.
Importation of Peppers From Certain Central American Countries
We are proposing to amend the regulations governing the importation of fruits and vegetables in order to allow certain types of peppers grown in approved registered production sites in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua to be imported into the United States without treatment. The conditions to which the proposed importation of peppers would be subject, including trapping, pre- harvest inspection, and shipping procedures, are designed to prevent the introduction of quarantine pests into the United States. This action would allow for the importation of peppers from those countries in Central America while continuing to provide protection against the introduction of quarantine pests into the United States.
Black Stem Rust; Movement Restrictions and Addition of Rust-Resistant Varieties
We are proposing to amend the black stem rust quarantine and regulations by changing the movement restrictions in order to allow clonally propagated offspring of rust-resistant Berberis cultivars to move into or through a protected area without completing the currently required 2-year growth period. This change would lessen an unnecessarily strict movement requirement. We also propose to add 13 varieties to the list of rust-resistant Berberis species. This change would allow for the interstate movement of these newly developed varieties without unnecessary restrictions.
Disbursement of Funds
The Agencies are revising their disbursement of funds regulations. This action is necessary since existing regulations do not accurately reflect the current disbursement methodologies employed by the Agencies. The intended effect is to simplify and update the regulations; to eliminate reference to the obsolete Loan Disbursement System; clarify Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) insurance coverage; and eliminate reference to the now defunct Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation (FSLIC). These amended regulations are to ensure the Agencies' field offices have current guidance on the disbursement methods available and supervised bank accounts.
Office of the Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics; Notice of the Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture Meeting
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. II, the United States Department of Agriculture announces a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture (AC21).
Eastern Idaho Resource Advisory Committee; Caribou-Targhee National Forest, Idaho Falls, ID
Pursuant to the authorities in the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463) and under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 (Pub. L. 106-393), the Caribou-Targhee National Forests' Eastern Idaho Resource Advisory Committee will meet Wednesday, November 30, 2005 in Idaho Falls for a business meeting. The meeting is open to the public.
Fresno County Resource Advisory Committee
The Fresno County Resource Advisory Committee will meet in Clovis, California. The purpose of the meeting is to review funded projects, discuss 2006 project submittal process and new committee appointments regarding the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self- Determination Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-393) for expenditures of Payments to States Fresno County Title II funds.
Quality Systems Verification Programs
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is establishing a separate user-fee schedule for the Quality Systems Verification Programs (QSVP) and expanding the scope of the QSVP to include all agricultural products and services within the responsibility of the Livestock and Seed (LS) Program. A new part 62 is established for QSVP services. QVSP are a collection of voluntary, audit-based, user-fee programs authorized under the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946. QSVP facilitate the global marketing and trade of agricultural products; provide consumers the opportunity to distinguish specific characteristics involved in the production and processing of agricultural products; and ensure that product consistently meets program requirements.
Seminole Electric Cooperative, Inc.; Notice of Intent To Hold Public Scoping Meeting and Prepare a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS) intends to hold a public scoping meeting and prepare a supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in connection with possible impacts related to a project proposed by Seminole Electric Cooperative, Inc. (SECI), with headquarters in Tampa, Florida. The proposal consists of the construction of a nominal 750 megawatt coal-based electrical generating unit at the Seminole Generating Station (SGS). The Station is located in Putnam County, Florida, about six miles north of Palatka. SGS Unit 3 will be constructed near the existing SGS Units 1 and 2. The new unit can be readily accommodated on the existing site. The financing and construction of the SGS Unit 1 and 2 was evaluated in a previous EIS. SECI is requesting RUS provide financing for the proposed project.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request-School Lunch and Breakfast Cost Study-II
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on the proposed collection of data for the School Lunch and Breakfast Cost Study-II in order to assess the adequacy of the Federal meal reimbursement rates.
University of Kentucky; Availability of an Environmental Assessment and a Finding of No Significant Impact for Field Tests of Genetically Engineered Neotyphodium
We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has prepared an environmental assessment for a field trial of genetically engineered strains of an endophytic fungus of perennial ryegrass, Neotyphodium sp. isolate Lp1. The fungi have been genetically engineered to disrupt the ergovaline synthesis pathway. The environmental assessment provides a basis for our conclusion that these field tests will not present a risk of introducing or disseminating a plant pest and will not have a significant impact on the quality of the human environment. Based on its finding of no significant impact, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has determined that an environmental impact statement need not be prepared for these field tests.
Mycogen Seeds/Dow AgroSciences LLC and Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc.; Availability of Determination of Nonregulated Status for Genetically Engineered Corn
We are advising the public of our determination that the Mycogen Seeds/Dow AgroSciences LLC and Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc. corn designated as corn line DAS-59122-7, which has been genetically engineered for resistance to a corn rootworm complex and for tolerance to the herbicide glufosinate, is no longer considered a regulated article under our regulations governing the introduction of certain genetically engineered organisms. Our determination is based on our evaluation of data submitted by Mycogen Seeds/Dow AgroSciences LLC and Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc. in their petition for a determination of non-regulated status, our analysis of other scientific data, and comments received from the public in response to a previous notice announcing the availability of the petition for nonregulated status and an environmental assessment. This notice also announces the availability of our written determination and our finding of no significant impact.
Solicitation of Nominations for Members of the Grain Inspection Advisory Committee
The Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) is announcing that nominations are being sought for persons to serve on GIPSA's Grain Inspection Advisory Committee.
Klamath National Forest, California and Oregon, Mt. Ashland LSR Habitat Restoration and Fuels Reduction Project
The Forest Service will prepare an environmental impact statement on a proposal to promote the development of late-successional habitat and reduce the risk of uncharacteristic wildfires on approximately 5013 acres.
Tuberculosis in Cattle and Bison; State and Zone Designations; Michigan
We are amending the bovine tuberculosis regulations to designate the Upper Peninsula of the State of Michigan as an accredited-free zone. We have determined that Michigan meets the requirements for zone recognition and that the Upper Peninsula meets the criteria for designation as an accredited-free zone. This action relieves restrictions on the interstate movement of cattle and bison from the Upper Peninsula.
United States Standards for Grades of Dewberries and Blackberries
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) published a notice soliciting comments on a proposal to revise the color requirements in the voluntary United States Standards for Grades of Dewberries and Blackberries. The Agency has decided not to proceed further with this action due to the comments and concerns received from the industry.
United States Standards for Grades of Fresh Asparagus
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) of the Department of Agriculture (USDA) is soliciting comments on its proposal to revise the United States Standards for Grades of Fresh Asparagus. At a 2003 meeting of the Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee, AMS was asked to review all the fresh fruit and vegetable grade standards for usefulness in serving the industry. As a result, AMS has noted the current U.S. Grade standards do not have provisions for grading purple or white asparagus. The proposed revision will allow purple or white asparagus to be certified to a U.S. grade.
Lake Tahoe Basin Federal Advisory Committee
The Lake Tahoe Basin Federal Advisory Committee will hold a meeting on October 25, 2005, at the Inn by the Lake, 3300 Lake Tahoe Blvd., South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150. This Committee, established by the Secretary of Agriculture on December 15, 1998 (64 FR 2876), is chartered to provide advice to the Secretary on implementing the terms of the Federal Interagency Partnership on the Lake Tahoe Region and other matters raised by the Secretary.
Melons Grown in South Texas; Continued Suspension of Handling and Assessment Collection Regulations
This rule continues in effect indefinitely a suspension of the minimum grade, quality, maturity, container, pack, inspection, assessment collection, and other related requirements prescribed under the South Texas melon (cantaloupes and honeydews) marketing order (order). It also continues in effect a suspension of reporting requirements under the order. These requirements were initially suspended for the 2004-05 fiscal period to allow the South Texas melon industry to evaluate the need for the marketing order. This action also suspends one remaining reporting requirement in effect. The order regulates the handling of melons grown in South Texas and is administered locally by the South Texas Melon Committee (Committee). On September 7, 2005, the Committee recommended termination of the order. This rule will relieve handlers of regulatory requirements while the Department of Agriculture (USDA) evaluates the Committee's recommendation to terminate the order.
Milk in the Upper Midwest Marketing Area; Final Partial Decision on Proposed Amendments to Marketing Agreement and to Order
This document proposes to adopt as a final rule, order language contained in the interim final rule published in the Federal Register on June 1, 2005, concerning pooling standards and transportation credit provisions of the Upper Midwest (UMW) milk marketing order. This document also sets forth the final decision of the Department and is subject to approval by producers. A separate decision will be issued that will address proposals concerning pooling and repooling of milk, temporary loss of Grade A status, and increasing the maximum administrative assessment.
Amendment to the Beef Promotion and Research Rules and Regulations
This proposed rule would amend the Beef Promotion and Research Order (Order) established under the Beef Promotion and Research Act of 1985 (Act) to reduce assessment levels for imported beef and beef products based on revised determinations of live animal equivalencies and to update and expand the Harmonized Tariff System numbers and categories, which identify imported live cattle, beef, and beef products to conform with recent updates in the numbers and categories used by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (USCBP).
Actions Taken To Ease Bulk Grain and Soybean Storage and Transportation Issues Exacerbated by Hurricane Katrina
The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is providing notification to all interested parties regarding additional actions announced on September 20, 2005, to reduce stress on the grain transportation system caused by Hurricane Katrina. The industry-focused actions include: (1) Assisting with the movement of barges of damaged corn from New Orleans; (2) providing incentives for alternative storage of grain; and (3) encouraging alternative shipping patterns to relieve pressure on the Mississippi River transportation system. CCC is seeking proposals from interested parties for: (1) barge movements of damaged corn from New Orleans; (2) alternative grain storage; and (3) offers to move grain through locations alternative to the Central Gulf.
Noxious Weed Control and Eradication Act; Revisions to Authority Citations
We are amending the authority citations in title 7, chapter III, and title 9, part 94, to reflect the enactment of the Noxious Weed Control and Eradication Act of 2004 (Pub. L. 108-412, 118 Stat. 2320, 7 U.S.C. 7781-7786), which amended the Plant Protection Act.
Protected Plant Permits
We are amending the endangered species regulations concerning terrestrial plants by replacing all references to ``general permits'' with references to ``protected plant permits.'' This final rule is necessary for the regulations to reflect the change in the name of the permit. We are also updating a mailing address in the regulations and making other nonsubstantive editorial changes.
Karnal Bunt; Criteria for Releasing Fields From Regulation
We are proposing to amend the Karnal bunt regulations regarding the requirements that must be met in order for a field or area to be removed from the list of regulated areas. The proposed changes would allow a field to qualify for release after 5 cumulative years of specified management practices, rather than 5 consecutive years as the current regulations provide, and reorganize the manner in which those management practices are described. These proposed changes would clarify the existing regulations and provide growers in regulated areas with greater flexibility in their planting decisions.
Tehama County Resource Advisory Committee
The Tehama County Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Red Bluff, California. Agenda items to be covered include: (1) Introduction, (2) Approval of Minutes, (3) Public Comment, (4) Modoc County Speaker, (5) Sub-Committee Reports, (6) Chairman's Perspective, (7) General Discussion, (8) County Update, (9) Next Agenda.
Addition of San Marino to the List of Countries Eligible To Export Meat Products to the United States
The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is adding San Marino to the list of countries eligible to export meat products to the United States. FSIS conducted a thorough review of the San Marino meat processing inspection system, including an on-site review of the San Marino meat processing inspection system in operation. FSIS concluded that San Marino's meat processing laws, regulations, and other written materials demonstrate that they establish requirements that are equivalent to the relevant requirements of the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) and its implementing regulations, and that San Marino's implementation of meat processing standards and procedures is equivalent to that of the United States. Meat products from San Marino may be imported into the United States only if these products are processed in certified establishments in San Marino and are derived from animals that were slaughtered only in certified establishments located in other countries that are eligible to export meat to the United States as a result of their slaughter inspection systems having been found equivalent to that of the United States. At present, San Marino will be eligible to export only processed pork products and not meat food products containing livestock product other than pork to the United States. San Marino did not ask to be approved for slaughter of pork. All meat products exported from San Marino to the United States will be subject to reinspection at the U.S. ports-of-entry by FSIS inspectors as required by law.
Notice of Meeting of the Agricultural Air Quality Task Force
The Agricultural Air Quality Task Force (AAQTF) will meet to continue discussions on critical air quality issues in relation to agriculture. Special emphasis will be placed on obtaining a greater understanding about the relationship between agricultural production and air quality.
Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan Program Annual Renewal Fee
In this final rule the Rural Business-Cooperative Service (the Agency) amends its regulation for the Business and Industry (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program to provide the authority for the charging of an annual renewal fee on all loans obligated after the publication of the final rule. This annual renewal fee is in addition to the existing one- time guarantee fee. Changes to modify the program regulations were originally proposed on February 28, 2005. The intended effect of this rule is to reduce the subsidy rate for guaranteed loans allowing the budget authority dollar level to support a greater level of assistance to the public (i.e., higher supportable loan level). A notice will be published in the Federal Register each fiscal year that will establish the guarantee fee rate and any annual renewal fee rate for loans obligated during that fiscal year.
Stall Reservations at Import Quarantine Facilities
We are adopting as a final rule, without change, an interim rule that amended the regulations regarding the importation of horses into the United States by requiring persons who cancel reservations for stall space at import quarantine facilities to notify us earlier and by increasing the fee for canceling reservations.
Notice of Intent To Revise a Currently Approved Information Collection
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regulations at 5 CFR part 1320 (60 FR 44977, August 29, 1995), this notice announces the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service's (CSREES) intention to revise a currently approved information collection entitled, ``Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service Application Kit for Research and Extension Programs.''
Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program-Tropical Regions
This proposed rule would change the handling of claims for specified ``tropical'' regions for the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP). The specified area includes Hawaii, Puerto Rico and specified additional areas. The proposed changes are intended to reduce the burden on program participants and ease program administration in the affected areas.
Information Collection: Brokerage Agreement for the Transportation of USDA Commodities
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is seeking comments from all interested individuals and organizations on the extension of an approved information collection with revision. This information collection is used to support of brokerage services needed to meet domestic and export food assistance program needs. This information collection will allow CCC to determine the availability of brokers to meet CCC's transportation needs. The agreement in this information collection is an addition to the Standard Rules Tender (SRT) Governing Motor Carrier Transportation, and/or Standard Operating Agreement (SOA) Governing Intermodal Transportation that CCC approved.