Rural Utilities Service September 2014 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

2014 Farm Bill Implementation Listening Session-Rural Community College Coordinated Strategy
Document Number: 2014-22827
Type: Notice
Date: 2014-09-25
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
As part of the implementation of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (commonly referred to as the 2014 Farm Bill), USDA Rural Development is hosting a listening session to receive public input about ways USDA can help community colleges form partnerships and get funding for local economic development. The 2014 Farm Bill directs USDA to work with community and technical colleges on a strategy to help them better serve the needs of local rural communities. The listening session will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to voice their comments, concerns or requests regarding this strategy. Instructions to register for and attend the listening session are in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.
Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Inc.: Antelope Valley Station-Neset 345-kV Transmission Line Project: Notice of Availability of the Record of Decision
Document Number: 2014-22412
Type: Notice
Date: 2014-09-22
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), has issued a Record of Decision (ROD) to meet its responsibilities under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), RUS's Environmental Policies and Procedures, 7 CFR part 1794, and other applicable environmental requirements related to providing financial assistance for Basin Electric Power Cooperative's (Basin Electric) proposed Antelope Valley Station (AVS) to Neset 345-kV Transmission Project (Project) in North Dakota. The Administrator of RUS has signed the ROD, which was effective upon signing. This ROD concludes RUS's environmental review process in accordance with NEPA and RUS's Environmental Policies and Procedures (7 CFR part 1794). The ultimate decision as to loan approval depends on the conclusion of the environmental review process plus financial and engineering analyses. Issuance of the ROD will allow these reviews to proceed. This ROD is not a decision on Basin's loan application and is not an approval of the expenditure of federal funds.
Methodology and Formulas for Allocation of Loan and Grant Program Funds
Document Number: 2014-22309
Type: Rule
Date: 2014-09-19
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Business-Cooperative Service (RBS) is publishing this final rule for allocating program funds to its State Offices. This final rule adds two programsthe Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) and the Intermediary Relending Program (IRP). In addition, this final rule revises State allocation formulae to account for changes in data reported by the U.S. Bureau of the Census' decennial Census. Finally, this final rule revises the weight percentages associated with each of the allocation criteria; provides flexibility in determining when not to make State allocations for a program; restricts the use of the transition formula and changes the limitations on how much program funds can change when the transition formula is used; adds provisions for making State allocation for other RBS programs, including new ones; and provides consistency, where necessary, in the allocation of RBS program funds to State Offices.
Eliminate the 6-Day Reservation Period Requirement for Rural Development Obligations
Document Number: 2014-21704
Type: Rule
Date: 2014-09-18
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
Rural Development (RD) is amending the regulations so that an obligation date for all guaranteed loans, direct loans, and grants will no longer be 6 working days from the date of request for reservation of authority. This action is necessary as the 6-day reservation period will be permanently removed from the Commercial Loan Servicing System (CLSS), Guaranteed Loan System (GLS), and Program Loan Accounting System (PLAS). The effect of this action will reduce system or manual intervention when legislative mandates direct cutoff for obligations and/or funding; eliminate program waivers on obligation date; increase consistency with other RD programs; reduce risks with new system implementations, such as the Financial Modernization Management Initiative; and eliminate numerous reconciliation issues between processed obligations and actual obligations for internal RD reports and USDA reporting requirements.
Eliminate the 6-Day Reservation Period Requirement for Rural Development Obligations
Document Number: 2014-21702
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2014-09-18
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
Rural Development (RD) is proposing to amend the regulations so that an obligation date for all guaranteed loans, direct loans, and grants will no longer be 6 working days from the date of request for reservation of authority. This action is necessary as the 6-day reservation period will be permanently removed from the Commercial Loan Servicing System (CLSS), Guaranteed Loan System (GLS), and Program Loan Accounting System (PLAS). The effect of this action will reduce system or manual intervention when legislative mandates direct cutoff for obligations and/or funding; eliminate program waivers on obligation date; increase consistency with other RD programs; reduce risks with new system implementations, such as the Financial Modernization Management Initiative; and eliminate numerous reconciliation issues between processed obligations and actual obligations for internal RD reports and USDA reporting requirements.
Guaranteed Loanmaking and Servicing Regulations
Document Number: 2014-21351
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2014-09-15
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Business-Cooperative Service (Agency) is an agency within the Rural Development mission area of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) responsible for administering the Business and Industry (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program. The B&I Guaranteed Loan Program is authorized by the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act and provides loan guarantees to banks and other approved lenders to finance private businesses located in rural areas. The Agency is proposing changes to refine the regulations for the B&I Guaranteed Loan Program in an effort to improve program delivery, clarify the regulations to make them easier to understand, and reduce delinquencies. The proposed changes to the program are expected to reduce the subsidy rate and thereby lower program subsidy costs over time as the proposed rule is implemented. By lowering the subsidy rate, the Agency may be able to provide greater leverage for the budget authority provided by Congress. This will allow the Agency to guarantee a higher total dollar amount of loan requests and, assuming the same average size of loans being guaranteed, to guarantee more loans. These changes could also result in increased lending activity, expanded business opportunities, and creation of more jobs in rural areas.