Brucellosis and Bovine Tuberculosis; Update of General Provisions
We are announcing a partial withdrawal of a proposed rule published in the Federal Register on December 16, 2015, that, if finalized, would have consolidated the regulations governing bovine tuberculosis and those governing brucellosis. Specifically, we are withdrawing those portions of the proposed rule that would have affected the provisions governing our domestic brucellosis and tuberculosis programs. We are taking this action after considering the comments we received following the publication of the proposed rule.
Addition of China to the List of Regions Affected by African Swine Fever
We are advising the public that we have added China to the list of regions that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service considers to be affected with African swine fever (ASF). We are taking this action because of the confirmation of ASF in China.
Supplemental Requirements for Importation of Fresh Citrus From Colombia Into the United States
We are affirming the supplemental requirements we added for the importation of fresh sweet orange, grapefruit, mandarin, clementine, and tangerine fruit from Colombia into the United States. In a previous notice, we made available to the public for review and comment supplemental requirements for mitigating pest risks posed by the importation of those commodities from Colombia into the United States. We also made available a pest risk assessment and commodity import evaluation document. After reviewing the comments we received on those documents, we are affirming the supplemental requirements we added to the Fruits and Vegetables Import Requirements database.
Importation of Fresh Jujube Fruit From China Into the Continental United States
We are advising the public that we have prepared a pest risk analysis that evaluates the risks associated with the importation of fresh jujube fruit from China into the continental United States. Based on the analysis, we have determined that the application of one or more phytosanitary measures will be sufficient to mitigate the risks of introducing or disseminating plant pests or noxious weeds via the importation of fresh jujube fruit from China. We are making the pest risk analysis available to the public for review and comment.
Scrapie in Sheep and Goats
We are amending the scrapie regulations by changing the risk groups and categories established for individual animals and for flocks, increasing the use of genetic testing as a means of assigning risk levels to animals, reducing movement restrictions for animals found to be genetically less susceptible or resistant to scrapie, and simplifying, reducing, or removing certain recordkeeping requirements. We are also providing designated scrapie epidemiologists with more alternatives and flexibility when testing animals in order to determine flock designations under the regulations. We are changing the definition of high-risk animal, which will change the types of animals eligible for indemnity, and to pay higher indemnity for certain pregnant ewes and does and early maturing ewes and does. The changes will also make the identification and recordkeeping requirements for goat owners consistent with those for sheep owners. These changes affect sheep and goat producers, persons who handle sheep and goats in interstate commerce, and State governments.
Animal Welfare; Amendments to Licensing Provisions and to Requirements for Dogs
We are proposing to amend the licensing requirements under the Animal Welfare Act regulations to promote compliance, reduce licensing fees, and strengthen existing safeguards that prevent individuals and businesses who have a history of noncompliance from obtaining a license or working with regulated animals. This action will reduce regulatory burden with respect to licensing and will more efficiently ensure licensees' sustained compliance with the Act. We are further proposing to strengthen the veterinary care and watering standards for regulated dogs to better align the regulations with the humane care and treatment standards set by the Animal Welfare Act. Additionally, we are proposing to make several miscellaneous changes for clarity and to correct typographical errors.
Notice of Availability of an Evaluation of the Foot-and-Mouth Disease Status of Singapore
We are advising the public that we are proposing to recognize Singapore as being free of foot-and-mouth disease. This proposed recognition is based on an evaluation we have prepared in connection with this action, which we are making available for review and comment.
Notice of Availability of an Evaluation of the Fever Tick Status of the State of Baja California, Mexico
We are notifying the public that we have prepared an evaluation of the State of Baja California, Mexico for fever ticks. The evaluation concludes that this region is free from fever ticks, and that ruminants imported from the area pose a low risk of exposing ruminants within the United States to fever ticks. We are making the evaluation available for review and comment.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Sand Pears From China
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request a revision to and extension of approval of an information collection associated with the regulations for the importation of sand pears from China into the United States.
Verdeca LLC; Availability of a Draft Plant Pest Risk Assessment and a Draft Environmental Assessment for Determination of Nonregulated Status of Soybean Genetically Engineered for Yield Increase and Resistance to Glufosinate
We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is making available for public comment a draft plant pest risk assessment (PPRA) and a draft environmental assessment (EA) for the new plant variety HB4 soybean designated as event IND-00410-5, which has been genetically engineered for increased yield and resistance to the herbicide glufosinate. We are making the draft PPRA and draft EA available for public review and comment.
Administrative Changes to the Regulations Governing the National Veterinary Accreditation Program
We are proposing to amend the regulations governing the National Veterinary Accreditation Program by clarifying the veterinary programs for which accredited veterinarians are authorized to perform duties under the Animal Health Protection Act. We are also proposing to add or revise certain definitions and terms used in the regulations. The changes we propose would update the program regulations.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Fresh Andean Blackberry and Raspberry Fruit From Ecuador Into the Continental United States
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request a revision to and extension of approval of an information collection associated with the importation of fresh Andean blackberry and raspberry fruit from Ecuador into the continental United States.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Wooden Handicrafts From China
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request a revision to and extension of approval of an information collection associated with the regulations for the importation of wooden handicrafts from China.
Environmental Impact Statement for Predator Damage Management in Idaho
We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service plans to prepare an environmental impact statement analyzing alternatives for predator damage management in Idaho.
Amendments to the Pale Cyst Nematode Regulations
We are proposing to amend the domestic quarantine regulations for pale cyst nematode by adding procedures that would allow persons to review and comment on the protocols for regulating and deregulating quarantine and associated areas. As part of this proposal, we are making the protocols publicly available. We are proposing these actions in response to a court order requiring the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service to facilitate public input into the development of protocols for deregulating fields for pale cyst nematode. The changes we propose would make the protocols more accessible and give persons the opportunity to comment on their development.