Proposed Collection; Comment Request
The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden conducts a pre-clearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 [44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)]. This program helps to ensure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed. Currently, the Civil Rights Center within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Administration and Management is soliciting comments concerning the proposed extension of the collection of the Compliance Information Report29 CFR part 31 (Title VI of the Civil Rights Act), NondiscriminationDisability29 CFR part 32 (section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act), and NondiscriminationWorkforce Investment Act 29 CFR part 37 (section 188 of the Workforce Investment Act). A copy of the proposed information collection request (ICR) can be obtained by contacting the office listed below in the addresses section of this notice. In addition, a copy of the ICR in alternate formats of large print and electronic file on computer disk are available upon request.
Confined Spaces in Construction
OSHA is proposing a rule to protect employees from the hazards resulting from exposure to confined spaces in the construction industry. Under the proposed rule, employers would first determine whether there is a confined space at a job site. If there is a confined space, the employer would determine if there are existing or potential hazards in the space. If there are such hazards, the employer then would classify the space according to the physical and atmospheric hazards found in it. The four classifications are: Isolated-Hazard Confined Space, Controlled-Atmosphere Confined Space, Permit-Required Confined Space, and Continuous System-Permit-Required Confined Space. The proposed requirements for each type of confined space are tailored to control the different types of hazards.
National Advisory Committee on Occupational Safety and Health (NACOSH); Announcement of Meeting
The National Advisory Committee on Occupational Safety and Health (NACOSH) will meet December 12, 2007, in Washington, DC.
Proposed Amendment to the Class Exemption for the Release of Claims and Extensions of Credit in Connection With Litigation
This document contains a notice of a proposed amendment to a class exemption from certain prohibited transaction restrictions of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA or the Act) and from certain taxes imposed by the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the Code). The proposed amendment to the class exemption, PTE 2003-39 (68 FR 75632, Dec. 31, 2003), would apply to transactions engaged in by a plan in connection with the settlement of litigation, including bankruptcy litigation. This amendment is being proposed in response to requests from practitioners and independent fiduciaries who sought an expansion of the types of consideration that plans could accept in connection with the settlement of litigation. The proposed exemption, if granted, would affect all employee benefit plans, the participants and beneficiaries of such plans, and parties in interest with respect to those plans engaging in the described transactions.
Standard on Fire Brigades; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements
OSHA solicits public comment concerning its proposal to extend OMB approval of the information collection requirements specified in its Standard on Fire Brigades (29 CFR 1910.156).
Clarification of Certain Procedures for Processing H-2A Labor Certification Applications
The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) is providing additional clarification to the procedures by which State Workforce Agencies and ETA National Processing Centers (NPC) process employer applications for H-2A temporary agricultural labor certification issued in the Training and Employment Guidance Letter (TEGL) No. 11-07 on November 6, 2007. These additional clarifications have been made under TEGL No. 11-07, Change 1, which is published below in order to inform the public. The clarifications and requirements stated in the TEGL take effect immediately.
Petitions for Modification
Section 101(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 and 30 CFR Part 44 govern the application, processing, and disposition of petitions for modification. This notice is a summary of petitions for modification filed by the parties listed below to modify the application of existing mandatory safety standards published in Title 30 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
Annual Reporting and Disclosure
This document contains amendments to Department of Labor regulations relating to annual reporting and disclosure requirements under Part 1 of Subtitle B of Title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA). The amendments contained in this document are necessary to conform the annual reporting and disclosure regulations to revisions to the Form 5500Annual Return/ Report of Employee Benefit Plan, including a new Form 5500-SF (Short Form or Short Form 5500), filed for employee pension and welfare benefit plans under ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (Code). The changes to the Form 5500 forms and implementing regulatory amendments are intended to facilitate the transition to an electronic filing system, reduce and streamline annual reporting burdens, especially for small businesses, and update the annual reporting forms to reflect current issues, agency priorities and new requirements under the Pension Protection Act of 2006. Some of the forms revisions apply on a transitional basis for the 2008 reporting year before all of the form revisions are fully implemented as part of the switch under the ERISA Filing Acceptance System (EFAST) to a wholly electronic filing system for the 2009 reporting year. The current effective date of the electronic filing requirement under 29 CFR 2520.104a-2 also is being postponed in this document to apply to plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2009. The regulatory amendments will affect the financial and other information required to be reported and disclosed by employee benefit plans filing the Form 5500 Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan, including the Form 5500-SF, under Title I of ERISA.
Revision of Annual Information Return/Reports
This document contains revisions to the Form 5500 Annual Return/Report forms, including the Form 5500 Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan and a new Form 5500-SF, Short Form Annual Return/ Report of Small Employee Benefit Plan (Short Form 5500 or Form 5500- SF), filed for employee pension and welfare benefit plans under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA), and the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (Code). The Form 5500 Annual Return/Report forms, including the schedules and attachments, are an important source of financial, funding, and other information about employee benefit plans for the Department of Labor, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, and the Internal Revenue Service (the Agencies), as well as for plan sponsors, participants and beneficiaries, and the general public. The revisions to the Form 5500 Annual Return/Report forms contained in this document, including the new Short Form 5500, are intended to streamline the annual reporting process, reduce annual reporting burdens, especially for small businesses, update the annual reporting forms to reflect current issues and agency priorities, incorporate new reporting requirements contained in the Pension Protection Act of 2006, and facilitate electronic filing. Some of the forms revisions will apply on a transitional basis for the 2008 reporting year before all of the forms revisions are fully implemented for the 2009 reporting year as part of the switch under the ERISA Filing Acceptance System (EFAST) to a wholly electronic filing system (EFAST2). The forms revisions affect employee pension and welfare benefit plans, plan sponsors, administrators, and service providers to plans subject to annual reporting requirements under ERISA and the Code.
Request for Certification of Compliance-Rural Industrialization Loan and Grant Program
The Employment and Training Administration is issuing this notice to announce the receipt of a ``Certification of Non-Relocation and Market and Capacity Information Report'' (Form 4279-2) for the following: Applicant/Location: Prima Bella Produce, Inc/Brawley, California. Principal Product/Purpose: The loan, guarantee, or grant application is to make tenant improvements to an existing facility and to purchase new and used packing line equipment. The NAICS industry code for this enterprise is: 115114 Postharvest Crop Activities (except Cotton Ginning).
Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health (FACOSH)
On September 28, 2007, the Secretary of Labor appointed six new members to the Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health (FACOSH).
Employer Payment for Personal Protective Equipment
Many Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) health, safety, maritime, and construction standards require employers to provide their employees with protective equipment, including personal protective equipment (PPE), when such equipment is necessary to protect employees from job-related injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. These requirements address PPE of many kinds: hard hats, gloves, goggles, safety shoes, safety glasses, welding helmets and goggles, faceshields, chemical protective equipment, fall protection equipment, and so forth. The provisions in OSHA standards that require PPE generally state that the employer is to provide such PPE. However, some of these provisions do not specify that the employer is to provide such PPE at no cost to the employee. In this rulemaking, OSHA is requiring employers to pay for the PPE provided, with exceptions for specific items. The rule does not require employers to provide PPE where none has been required before. Instead, the rule merely stipulates that the employer must pay for required PPE, except in the limited cases specified in the standard.
Public Meeting of the Advisory Committee on Apprenticeship (ACA)
Pursuant to section 10 of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463; 5 U.S.C. APP. 1), notice is hereby given of an open meeting of the Advisory Committee on Apprenticeship (ACA). Time and Date: The meeting will begin at approximately 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, December 12, 2007, and continue until approximately 5 p.m. The meeting will reconvene at approximately 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, December 13, 2007, and adjourn at approximately 5 p.m. Place: Stanford Court, 905 California Street, Nob Hill, San Francisco, California 94108. The agenda is subject to change due to time constraints and priority items which may come before the Committee between the time of this publication and the scheduled date of the ACA meeting.
Mine Rescue Team Equipment
The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is extending the comment period for the Proposed Rule on Mine Rescue Team Equipment for underground coal and metal and nonmetal mines published on September 6, 2007 (72 FR 51338). This extension gives commenters additional time to review recently posted transcripts on MSHA's Web site.
Mine Rescue Teams
The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is extending the comment period for the Proposed Rule on Mine Rescue Teams for underground coal mines published on September 6, 2007 (72 FR 51320). This extension gives commenters additional time to review recently posted transcripts on MSHA's Web site.
Bureau of International Labor Affairs, Request for Information on Efforts by Certain Countries To Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labor
This notice is a request for information for use by the Department of Labor in preparation of an annual report on certain trade beneficiary countries' implementation of international commitments to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. This will be the seventh such report by the Department of Labor under the Trade and Development Act of 2000 (TDA).
Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health; Notice of Meeting
The Maritime Advisory Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (``MACOSH'' or ``Committee'') was established to advise the Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA on issues relating to occupational safety and health in the maritime industries. The purpose of this Federal Register notice is to announce the MACOSH and workgroup meetings scheduled for November 27-28, 2007.
Federal-State Unemployment Compensation Program: Certifications for 2007 Under the Federal Unemployment Tax Act
The Secretary of Labor signed the annual certifications under the Federal Unemployment Tax Act, 26 U.S.C. 3301 et seq., thereby enabling employers who make contributions to state unemployment funds to obtain certain credits against their liability for the federal unemployment tax. By letter the certifications were transmitted to the Secretary of the Treasury. The letter and certifications are printed below.