Single Family Housing Direct and Guaranteed Loan Programs
Through this action, the Rural Housing Service (RHS or Agency) is proposing to amend its regulations for the direct and guaranteed single family housing loan and grant programs.
Roadless Area Conservation; National Forest System Lands in Alaska
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is initiating an environmental impact statement (EIS) and public rulemaking process to address the management of inventoried roadless areas on the Tongass National Forest within the State of Alaska. This rulemaking is the result of a petition submitted by Governor Bill Walker's administration in January 2018 on behalf of the State of Alaska, pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act. The petition was accepted by the Secretary of Agriculture in April 2018. The intent is to evaluate the regulatory exemption set forth in the petition, as well as to evaluate other management solutions that address infrastructure, timber, energy, mining, access, and transportation needs to further Alaska's economic development, while still conserving roadless areas for future generations.
Agricultural Trade Promotion Program
The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is issuing a new regulation to implement the Agricultural Trade Promotion Program (ATP). The ATP provides assistance to U.S. agricultural industries to conduct activities that promote U.S. agricultural commodities in foreign markets for commodities impacted by tariffs, including activities that address existing or potential non-tariff barriers to trade. This rule specifies, among other things, eligibility requirements, activities eligible for reimbursement, contribution requirements, and application procedures for the ATP. This rule also proposes a new information collection for required program information. Specific program requirements will be set forth in future Notices of Funds Availability (NOFAs) announced through the Grants.gov website.
Market Facilitation Program
The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is issuing a new regulation to implement the Market Facilitation Program (MFP). MFP provides payments to producers with commodities that have been significantly impacted by actions of foreign governments resulting in the loss of traditional exports. This rule specifies the eligibility requirements, payment calculations, and application procedures for MFP. The details for specific commodities and the relevant application start dates will be announced in subsequent notices of funds availability (NOFAs).
Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA); Market Facilitation Program (MFP) Payments to Producers
MFP provides payments to producers with commodities that have been significantly impacted by actions of foreign governments resulting in the loss of traditional exports. This NOFA announces the availability of MFP funds for eligible producers of the following commodities for 2018: Soybeans, sorghum, wheat, extra long staple (ELS) cotton, upland cotton, corn, hogs, and milk. On behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), the Farm Service Agency (FSA) will administer MFP. MFP participants will receive an MFP payment, calculated based on the eligible production multiplied by the participant's share multiplied by the MFP payment rate.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP)
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on the proposed information collection. This is a revision of a currently approved collection associated with requests by State agencies to operate a Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP) to temporarily provide food assistance to households following a disaster.
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will be requested.
Inviting Applications for the Delta Health Care Services Grant Program
This Notice announces that the Rural Business-Cooperative Service (Agency) is accepting fiscal year (FY) 2018 applications for the Delta Health Care Services (DHCS) grant program. The Agency will publish the program funding level on the Rural Development website: https://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/delta-health-care-s ervices- grants. The purpose of this program is to provide financial assistance to address the continued unmet health needs in the Delta Region through cooperation among health care professionals, institutions of higher education, research institutions, and economic development entities in the Delta Region.
Information Collection; Pesticide-Use Proposal
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Forest Service is seeking comments from all interested individuals and organizations on the revision of a currently approved information collection, Pesticide-Use Proposal.
Southern Region Recreation Resource Advisory Committee
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972 (FACA), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announces solicitation for nominations to fill four vacancies on the Southern Region Recreation Resource Advisory Committee (RRAC). Members will be appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture and serve a three-year term.
Pears Grown in Oregon and Washington; Increased Assessment Rate for Fresh Pears
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Fresh Pear Committee (Committee) to increase the assessment rate established for the 2018-2019 and subsequent fiscal periods. The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Adjustment of Appendices Under the Dairy Tariff-Rate Import Quota Licensing Regulation for the 2018 Tariff-Rate Quota Year
This notice publishes the document ``Articles Subject to: Appendix 1, Historical Licenses; Appendix 2 Non-historical Licenses; and Appendix 3 and 4, Designated Importers Licenses for Quota Year 2018.'' The quantities in Appendices 1 and 2 have been revised under the Dairy Tariff-Rate Import Quota Licensing Regulation for the 2018 quota year to reflect the cumulative annual transfers from Appendix 1 to Appendix 2 for certain dairy product import licenses permanently surrendered by licensees or revoked by the Licensing Authority.
Assessment of Fees for Dairy Import Licenses for the 2019 Tariff-Rate Import Quota Year
This notice announces a fee of $300 to be charged for the 2019 tariff-rate quota (TRQ) year for each license issued to a person or firm by the Department of Agriculture authorizing the importation of certain dairy articles, which are subject to tariff-rate quotas set forth in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) of the United States.
Nuseed Americas Inc.; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Canola Genetically Engineered for Altered Oil Profile
We are advising the public of our determination that canola designated as event B0050-027, which has been genetically engineered to accumulate the long chain omega-3 fatty acid known as docosahexaenoic acid in seed, 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 Nuseed Americas Inc. in its petition for a determination of nonregulated status, our analysis of available scientific data, and comments received from the public in response to our previous notices announcing the availability of the petition for nonregulated status and its associated environmental assessment and plant pest risk assessment. This notice also announces the availability of our written determination and finding of no significant impact.
Irish Potatoes Grown in Colorado; Increased Assessment Rate for Area No. 2
This rule implements a recommendation from the Colorado Potato Administrative Committee (Committee) to increase the assessment rate established for Area No. 2 for the 2018-2019 and subsequent fiscal periods. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Stakeholder Listening Opportunity for Priorities in Research, Education and Extension
USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture announces its stakeholder listening initiative ``NIFA Listens: Investing in Science to Transform Lives.'' This stakeholder listening opportunity informs the research, extension and education priorities of NIFA, which has the mission of investing in and advancing agricultural research, education and extension to solve societal challenges. For the purpose of this opportunity, Agriculture is defined broadly and includes research, extension, and education in food, fiber, forestry, range, nutritional and social sciences, including food safety and positive youth development. NIFA's investments in transformative science directly support the long-term prosperity and global pre-eminence of U.S. agriculture. This listening opportunity allows stakeholders to provide feedback on the following questions: ``When considering all of agriculture, what is the greatest challenge that should be addressed through NIFA's research, education, and extension?'', ``In your field, what is the most-needed breakthrough in science/technology that would advance your agricultural enterprise?'' and, ``What is your top priority in food and agricultural research, extension, or education that NIFA should address?'' This effort to obtain input regarding the challenges, needed breakthroughs, and priorities will be carried out through online and in-person submission mechanisms. Stakeholder input received from the two mechanisms is treated equally. The challenges, needed breakthroughs, and priorities identified by this effort will be evaluated in conjunction with input from NIFA staff. This information will be critical for NIFA's evaluation of existing science emphasis areas and to identify investment opportunities and gaps in the current portfolio of programs. The information obtained through this iterative analysis and synthesis will help to ensure the strategic positioning and relevancy of NIFA's investments in advancing agricultural research, education and extension.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Contract Pilot and Aircraft Acceptance
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 use of contract pilots and aircraft in Plant Protection and Quarantine domestic, emergency, and biological control programs.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; National Poultry Improvement Plan
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 National Poultry Improvement Plan.
Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Small Lots of Seeds Without Phytosanitary Certificates
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 small lots of seeds into the United States without phytosanitary certificates.
Oranges and Grapefruit Grown in the Lower Rio Grande Valley in Texas; Decreased Assessment Rate
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Texas Valley Citrus Committee (Committee) to decrease the assessment rate established for the 2018-19 and subsequent fiscal periods. The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Revision of the Land Management Plan for El Yunque National Forest
El Yunque National Forest, located in Puerto Rico, has prepared a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS), a Revised Land Management Plan and a Draft Record of Decision (ROD). This notice is to inform the public that a 60-day period is being initiated where individuals or entities with specific concerns on El Yunque's Revised Land Management Plan and its associated FEIS may file an objection for a Forest Service review prior to the approval of the Revised Land Management Plan.
Notice of Intent To Seek Approval To Collect Information
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and Office of Management and Budget regulations, this notice announces the request of the Agricultural Research Service, permission to collect information from North Dakota landowners in nine counties, to gain their perspective on their grasslands in the Northern Great Plains. A mail survey composed of 42 questions will be mailed to landowners. Topics for which information will be collected from respondents include farm/ranch characteristics, land management style, land use practices, opinions about new grass species, opinions about Kentucky bluegrass and what producers are doing about it, Kentucky bluegrass management, and personal characteristics.
Notice of Intent To Request Revision and Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the intent of the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) to request revision and extension of a currently approved information collection to comply with a mandate in the 2014 Farm Bill. (. . . the Secretary of Agriculture should recognize the threat feral swine pose to the domestic swine population and the entire agriculture industry . . .).
Notice of Proposed Changes to the National Handbook of Conservation Practices for the Natural Resources Conservation Service
Notice is hereby given of the intention of NRCS to issue a series of revised conservation practice standards in the NHCP. These standards include Combustion System Improvement (Code 372), Dust Control on Unpaved Roads and Surfaces (Code 373), Integrated Pest Management (Code 595), Nutrient Management (Code 590), Pesticide Mitigation (Code 594), Subsurface Drain (Code 606), Waste Facility Closure (Code 360), and Wildlife Habitat Planting (Code 420). NRCS State Conservationists who choose to adopt these practices in their States will incorporate them into Section IV of their respective electronic Field Office Technical Guide. These practices may be used in conservation systems that treat highly erodible land (HEL) or on land determined to be a wetland. Section 343 of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 requires NRCS to make available for public review and comment all proposed revisions to conservation practice standards used to carry out HEL and wetland provisions of the law.
Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Program
The Rural Housing Service (RHS or Agency) proposes to make several changes to the single-family housing guaranteed loan program (SFHGLP) regulations to streamline the loss claim process for lenders who have acquired title to property through voluntary liquidation or foreclosure; clarify that lenders must comply with applicable laws, including those within the purview of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; and better align loss mitigation policies with those in the mortgage industry.
Notice of Request for an Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request an extension of approval of an information collection associated with qualitative customer and stakeholder feedback on service delivery by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
Cranberries Grown in States of Massachusetts, et al.; Establishment of Handler Diversion and Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection; Correction
The Agricultural Marketing Service is correcting a final rule that appeared in the Federal Register on July 12, 2018. The document implemented new information collection and reporting requirements for a handler diversion under the Cranberry marketing order (Order).
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Rural Utilities Service, an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), invites comments on this information collection for which approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will be requested.
Notice of Request for Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the USDA Rural Development intention to request a revision for a currently approved information collection under Section 6025, Strategic Economic and Community Development (SECD), under the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill).
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Special Milk Program for Children
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this information collection. This collection is a revision of a currently approved collection which FNS employs to determine public participation in Special Milk Program for Children.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Study of School Food Authority (SFA) Procurement Practices
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This collection is a new information collection for the Study of School Food Authority (SFA) Procurement Practices. This study is intended to describe and assess the practices of SFAs related to procuring goods and services for school meal programs (e.g., National School Lunch Program [NSLP], and the School Breakfast Program [SBP]), and to better understand how SFAs make decisions that lead to these procurement practices. The SFA Procurement Practices study will go beyond previous studies that concentrated on single food service or Child Nutrition programs (e.g., NSLP, SBP, or the Summer Food Service Program [SFSP]) or studies that focused on single procurement practices (e.g., use of Food Service Management Companies [FSMCs]) at the SFA level. This collection includes a mixed-methods approach of qualitative and quantitative information utilizing a structured web-based survey, as well as in-depth interviews (IDIs) to be conducted by telephone. Data will be collected from a subsample of the SFA population participating in the second year of the Child Nutrition Program Operations Study-II (CN-OPS II) (OMB Number 0584-0607).
Comprehensive River Management Plan for Black Butte Wild and Scenic River, Including Portions of Cold Creek, Mendocino National Forest, Mendocino County, California
In accordance with Section 3(d)(1) of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, the USDA Forest Service announces the completion and availability of the comprehensive river management plan for Black Butte Wild and Scenic River, including portions of Cold Creek. On May 11, 2018, Acting Mendocino Forest Supervisor, Gar Abbas signed a decision notice to adopt a comprehensive river management plan (``CRMP'') for Black Butte Wild and Scenic River (including Cold Creek). The Black Butte Wild and Scenic River CRMP (including Cold Creek) addresses resource protection, development of lands and facilities, user capacities, and other management practices necessary or desirable to achieve the purposes of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. This CRMP was prepared after consultation with State and local governments and the interested public. An environmental assessment (EA) was prepared as part of the CRMP development. This EA has been prepared in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act and other relevant federal laws and regulations. The EA discloses the direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental effects that would result from adopting the CRMP. The Black Butte Wild and Scenic River CRMP (including Cold Creek) and the EA are available for review at https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/ ?project=50351 and the following offices: Upper Lake Ranger District, 10025 Elk Mountain Road, Upper Lake, CA 95484. Mendocino National Forest Supervisor's Office, 825 N Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95988.
Willamette National Forest, McKenzie River Ranger District; Oregon; Flat Country Project
The Flat Country Project is located on the western slope of the Cascades, extending from Scott Mountain to the upper reach of the McKenzie River, eight miles east of McKenzie Bridge, Oregon. The project area is approximately 74,063 acres. There is a high amount of mid-seral stands, moving the seral distribution away from historic levels and limiting stand structure and species diversity across the landscape. This project proposes to thin, reduce the number of trees, and increase the size and structure of the remaining forest over time. Activities proposed include forest management treatments across approximately 5,001 acres, including forest thinning (including riparian reserve thinning) and regenerating harvests. Additional proposed activities would include road work (including maintenance, reconstruction, temporary road construction, and decommissioning), and meadow enhancements.
Rural Development Cooperative Agreement Program
The Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development (Agency) is seeking applications to support regional economic development planning efforts in rural communities under the Rural Economic Development Innovation (REDI) initiative. This funding opportunity will be administered by the Rural Development Innovation Center, in partnership with the Rural Business-Cooperative Service. The Agency is announcing up to $750,000 in competitive cooperative agreement funds in fiscal year (FY) 2018. Rural Development Agency may select one, multiple, or no award recipients. The Agency reserves the right to withhold the awarding of any funds if no application receives a score of at least 60 points. This Notice lists the information needed to submit an application for these funds. This Notice announces that the Agency is accepting FY 2018 applications to support REDI.
Establishment of Maximum Interest Rate
The Rural Housing Service (RHS or Agency) seeks public comments on updating the provisions of the Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Program (SFHGLP), specifically regarding the maximum interest rate, its impact on loan making to potential SFHGLP borrowers, and possible changes to the interest rate cap. RHS is soliciting input regarding the maximum interest rate to help the Agency determine whether the interest rate cap should be modified in order to support the agency's mission to offer applicants, who are unable to secure the credit necessary for such housing from other sources under conventional credit terms, an opportunity to acquire new or existing housing for use as a primary residence; finance the repair and rehabilitation costs associated with the purchase of the home; and refinance an existing Section 502 loan to lower the interest rate. These opportunities are provided to applicants under terms and conditions which the applicant can reasonably be expected to fulfill.
Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest; Clark Counties, Nevada; Lee Canyon Notice of Availability
The Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest is issuing this notice to advise the public of the 45-day public comment period for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Lee Canyon Ski Area Master Development Plan Phase I (Lee Canyon Project) and the addition of a proposed project-specific amendment to the Toiyabe National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan (Forest Plan) for the Proposed Action and alternatives other than the No Action alternative. The Notice of Intent for the Lee Canyon Project was published in the Federal Register on March 23, 2017 (82 FR 14865). Today's notice has been published to ensure all persons and entities interested in the Lee Canyon Project are aware of the addition of the proposed amendment and to identify the Forest Service planning rule provisions likely to be directly related and, therefore, applicable to the Forest Plan amendment. The public is advised that during the 45 day comment period for the Lee Canyon Project Draft EIS, comments may also be submitted regarding the substantive requirements that are likely to be directly related to the amendment and the scope and scale to which the substantive requirements would apply. Comments will be considered in the preparation of the Final EIS and Draft Record of Decision for the Lee Canyon Project.
United States Standards for Grades of Pork Carcasses
This Notice informs the public that the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will not proceed with revisions to the United States Standards for Grades of Pork Carcasses (pork standards) at this time.
Cotton Board Rules and Regulations: Adjusting Supplemental Assessment on Imports (2018 Amendments)
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is amending the Cotton Board Rules and Regulations, increasing the value assigned to imported cotton for the purposes of calculating supplemental assessments collected for use by the Cotton Research and Promotion Program. This amendment is required each year to ensure that assessments collected on imported cotton and the cotton content of imported products will be the same as those paid on domestically produced cotton. In addition, AMS is updating the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) statistical reporting numbers that were amended since the last assessment adjustment in 2017.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request-Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Store Applications, Forms FNS-252, FNS-252-E, FNS-252-FE, FNS-252-R, FNS-252-2 and FNS-252-C
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. This is a revision of a currently approved collection in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and concerns Retail Store Applications (Forms FNS-252; FNS-252-E; FNS-252- FE; FNS-252-R; FNS-252-2; and FNS-252-C).
Seed Cotton Changes to Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC), Price Loss Coverage (PLC) Programs
This rule revises the eligibility requirements, enrollment procedures, and payment calculation for ARC and PLC required to conform with the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (BBA). BBA amends the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the 2014 Farm Bill) to add seed cotton as a covered commodity and remove generic base acres from ARC and PLC. This rule also amends provisions to include seed cotton yields, allocation of generic base acres, election of ARC-County Option (ARC-CO) or PLC for seed cotton base acres, and enrollment for 2018. This rule also makes some minor, clarifying changes to the administration section.
Notice of Request for Expression of Interest for Potential Sites for Headquarters Office Locations
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is exploring potential sites for a proposed new headquarters location for the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the Economic Research Service (ERS). The need for a proposed NIFA facility would be approximately 90,000 square feet to house approximately 360 employees. The need for a proposed ERS facility would be up to 70,000 square feet to house up to 260 employees. Appropriations will dictate the ultimate size of the selection. USDA is requesting Expressions of Interest from State and Local governments, industry, academia, interested parties and organizations for potential locations that would accommodate the construction and/or lease and operation of a NIFA and/or ERS headquarters facility. USDA is interested in exploring options to house the headquarters of NIFA and ERS jointly or in separate locations.
Conditions for Payment of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Indemnity Claims
We are adopting as a final rule, with changes, an interim rule that amended the regulations pertaining to certain diseases of livestock and poultry to specify conditions for payment of indemnity claims for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). The interim rule provided a formula allowing us to split such payments between poultry and egg owners and parties with which the owners enter into contracts to raise or care for the eggs or poultry based on the proportion of the production cycle completed. That action was necessary to ensure that all contractors are compensated appropriately. The interim rule also clarified an existing policy regarding the payment of indemnity for eggs destroyed due to HPAI and required a statement from owners and contractors, unless specifically exempted, indicating that at the time of detection of HPAI in their facilities, they had in place and were following a biosecurity plan aimed at keeping HPAI from spreading to commercial premises.
Retail Exemptions Adjusted Dollar Limitations
The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing the dollar limitations on the amount of meat and meat food products, poultry, and poultry products that a retail store can sell to hotels, restaurants, and similar institutions without disqualifying itself for exemption from Federal inspection requirements. In accordance with FSIS's regulations, for calendar year 2018, the value for the dollar limitation for meat and meat food products remains unchanged at $75,700. For calendar year 2018, the value for the dollar limitation for poultry and poultry products also remains unchanged at $56,600. FSIS reviews the dollar limitations on a yearly basis and makes adjustments based on price changes for these products evidenced by the Consumer Price Index. FSIS is currently considering the retail dollar limitations for Siluriformes fish and fish products. FSIS intends to propose a methodology for setting the dollar limitations for Siluriformes fish and fish products in a separate Federal Register Notice.
Request for Nominations of Members for the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board, Specialty Crop Committee, and National Genetics Advisory Council
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announces the opening of the solicitation for nominations to fill vacancies on the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economic (NAREEE) Advisory Board and its subcommittees. There are eight vacancies on the NAREEE Advisory Board; three vacancies on the Specialty Crop Committee; six vacancies on the Citrus Disease Subcommittee; and two vacancies on the National Genetics Advisory Council.
Notice of Solicitation of Applications for the Rural Energy for America Program for Fiscal Year 2019
The Rural Business-Cooperative Service (the Agency) Notice of Solicitation of Applications (NOSA) is being issued prior to passage of a final appropriations act to allow potential applicants time to submit applications for financial assistance under Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) for Federal Fiscal Year (FY) 2019, and give the Agency time to process applications within the current FY. This NOSA is being issued prior to enactment of full year appropriation for FY2019. The Agency will publish the amount of funding received in any continuing resolution or the final appropriations act on its website at https:// www.rd.usda.gov/newsroom/notices-solicitation-applications-no sas. Expenses incurred in developing applications will be at the applicant's risk. The REAP has two types of funding assistance: (1) Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Assistance and (2) Energy Audit and Renewable Energy Development Assistance Grants. The Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvement Assistance provides grants and guaranteed loans to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to purchase and install renewable energy systems and make energy efficiency improvements to their operations. Eligible renewable energy systems for REAP provide energy from: Wind, solar, renewable biomass (including anaerobic digesters), small hydro-electric, ocean, geothermal, or hydrogen derived from these renewable resources. The Energy Audit and Renewable Energy Development Assistance Grant is available to a unit of State, Tribal, or local government; instrumentality of a State, Tribal, or local government; institution of higher education; rural electric cooperative; a public power entity; or a council, as defined in 16 U.S.C. 3451. The recipient of grant funds, grantee, will establish a program to assist agricultural producers and rural small businesses with evaluating the energy efficiency and the potential to incorporate renewable energy technologies into their operations.