Rural Utilities Service 2015 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Construction and Repair
Document Number: 2015-33038
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-12-31
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
Construction and Repair
Document Number: 2015-33037
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-12-31
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
Electric System Construction Policies and Procedures
Document Number: 2015-33020
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-12-31
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-32443
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-12-24
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which the Agency intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-32442
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-12-24
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which the Agency intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Rural Development Loan Servicing; Correction
Document Number: 2015-29781
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-11-25
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
This document contains corrections to the published rule in the Federal Register of March 13, 2015, entitled ``Rural Development Loan Servicing.''
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-28731
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-11-12
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which RUS intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-27602
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-10-29
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which the Agency intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Announcement of Grant Application Deadlines and Funding Levels for the Assistance to High Energy Cost Rural Communities Grant Program
Document Number: 2015-25975
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-10-13
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), announces the availability of up to $10 million in fiscal year 2015 (FY15) and application deadlines for competitive grants to assist communities with extremely high energy costs. These grants are made available under the authority of section 19 of the Rural Electrification Act, of 1936 as amended (7 U.S.C. 918a) and program regulations at 7 CFR part 1709. Eligibility is limited to communities with average annual residential energy costs exceeding 275 percent of the national average. Grant funds may be used to acquire, construct, extend, upgrade, or otherwise improve energy generation, transmission, or distribution facilities serving eligible communities. Grants may also be used for programs that install on-grid and off-grid renewable energy systems and energy efficiency improvements in eligible communities. This notice describes the eligibility and application requirements, the criteria that will be used by RUS to award funding, and how to obtain application materials.
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-25150
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-10-05
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development administers rural utilities programs through the Rural Utilities Service (RUS). The USDA Rural Development invites comments on the following information collections for which the Agency intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-25147
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-10-05
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will be requested.
New Equipment Contract for Telecommunications and Broadband Borrowers
Document Number: 2015-25045
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2015-10-01
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), a Rural Development agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), is requesting public comments on streamlining the Agency's contractual process for equipment procurement by replacing type-specific Equipment Contracts, RUS Forms 397, 398, 525, 545, and the associated documents (Forms 231, 396, 396a, 397b, 397c, 397d, 397f, 397g, 397h, 517, 525a, 744, 752a, 754, and addenda) with a new, unified Equipment Contract, RUS Form 395 and the associated close-out documents (Forms 395a, 395b, 395c and 395d).
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-24225
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-24
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended), 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.
Energy Answers Arecibo, LLC: Extension of Comment Period for a Draft Environmental Impact Statement
Document Number: 2015-23377
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-17
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 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Energy Answers Arecibo, LLC's (Energy Answers) proposed Waste to Energy Project (Project) in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. RUS published a notice of availability and public hearing on August 7, 2015, that provided a comment period ending on the date announced in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (USEPA) EIS receipt notice of September 28, 2015. RUS is extending the public comment period for the Draft EIS by an additional 45 days to November 12, 2015.
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-23087
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-15
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service, a Rural Development agency of the United States Department of Agriculture invites comments on the following information collections for which the Agency intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Sunshine Act Meeting
Document Number: 2015-23058
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-11
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreement Filed
Document Number: 2015-22912
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-11
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Request for Additional Information
Document Number: 2015-22909
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-11
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Agency Information Collection Activites; New Information Collection Request
Document Number: 2015-21916
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-03
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC or Commission) announces plans to submit a Generic Information Collection Request (ICR) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to collect information for requests for dispute resolution services submitted to its Office of Consumer Affairs and Dispute Resolution Services (CADRS). Prior to submitting the ICR to OMB, the FMC invites comments from the public on the ICR.
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-21616
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-09-01
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Amendments to Regulations Governing Access to Commission Information and Records; Freedom of Information Act
Document Number: 2015-21453
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-09-01
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
The Federal Maritime Commission amends its regulations governing access to Commission information and records and its regulations implementing the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The revisions update and consolidate the provisions identifying records available without the need for a FOIA request, including records available on the Commission's public Web site; revise response time procedures for processing FOIA requests; affirmatively indicate that the Commission uses a multitrack system for processing FOIA requests; modify the criteria for a FOIA request to qualify for expedited processing; and extend the administrative appeal deadline.
Amendments to Regulations Governing Access to Commission Information and Records; Freedom of Information Act; Withdrawal
Document Number: 2015-21452
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-09-01
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
The Federal Maritime Commission is withdrawing a Direct Final Rule that would have amended its regulations governing access to Commission information and records and its regulations implementing the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-21134
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-08-26
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-20859
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-08-24
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-20489
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-08-19
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-19848
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-08-12
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreement Filed
Document Number: 2015-19447
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-08-07
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-19258
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-08-05
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-18604
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-07-29
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-17998
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-07-22
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Request for Additional Information; Correction
Document Number: 2015-17997
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-07-22
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
The Federal Maritime Commission published a document in the Federal Register on July 17, 2015, indicating it has formally requested that the parties to the Pacific Ports Operational Improvements Agreement (FMC Agreement Nos. 201227-002 and 201227-003) provide additional information pursuant to 46 U.S.C. 40304(d). This action prevents the Agreement amendment from becoming effective as originally scheduled. The notice erroneously did not list each of the parties to the Agreement.
Controlled Carriers Under the Shipping Act of 1984
Document Number: 2015-17643
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-07-22
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
The Federal Maritime Commission is publishing an updated list of controlled carriers, i.e., ocean common carriers operating in U.S.- foreign trades that are owned or controlled by foreign governments. Such carriers are subject to special regulatory oversight by the Commission under the Shipping Act of 1984.
Notice of Request for Additional Information
Document Number: 2015-17521
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-07-17
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Notice of Agreements Filed
Document Number: 2015-17362
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-07-15
Agency: Rural Utilities Service
Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical, and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Program
Document Number: 2015-14989
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-06-24
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Business-Cooperative Service (Agency) is publishing this interim final rule for the Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical, and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Program (the Program), formerly the Biorefinery Assistance Program, incorporating changes required in the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill) and addressing comments received on the interim final rule published on February 14, 2011 (76 FR 8404). This interim final rule establishes provisions for the loan guarantees available for Biorefineries to support the production of Advanced Biofuels and Renewable Chemicals and for Biobased Product Manufacturing facilities.
Strategic Economic and Community Development
Document Number: 2015-15048
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-06-18
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
On May 20, 2015, USDA published an interim rule establishing a priority for projects that support the implementation of strategic economic and community development plans across multi-jurisdictional areas. This priority applies to several specific programs with the Rural Business-Cooperative Service, the Rural Housing Service, and the Rural Utilities Service. The effective date was listed as June 19, 2015 and is being delayed to July 17, 2015.
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-14461
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-06-15
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on the following information collection for which RUS intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-14458
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-06-15
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which the RUS intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Notice of Solicitation of Applications (NOSA) for the Strategic Economic and Community Development Programs for Fiscal Year (FY) 2015
Document Number: 2015-13100
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-06-01
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
Section 6025 of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill) enables the Secretary of Agriculture to provide priority to projects that support Strategic Economic and Community Development plans. This Notice invites applicants who have submitted or will be submitting applications for the programs (referred to as ``underlying programs'') in Fiscal Year 2015. For FY 2015, projects eligible for Section 6025 priority points will compete one time with all other projects eligible for the applicable underlying program's year-end pool of funds. These priority points are not eligible to projects competing for FY 2015 funding prior to the program's year-end pool of funds competition. All applicants are responsible for any additional expenses incurred in preparing and submitting Form RD 1980-88.
Final Affordability Determination-Energy Efficiency Standards; Correction
Document Number: 2015-12931
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-05-28
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
On May 6, 2015, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), along with the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), published a joint notice of final determination regarding adoption of the 2009 edition of the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) for single family homes and the 2007 edition of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) 90.1 for multifamily buildings. A clerical error in production resulted in the wrong CFR attribution for USDA in the document's heading. This correction carries the proper CFR citation in its heading.
Information Collection Activity; Comment Request
Document Number: 2015-12593
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-05-26
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service (Agency) invites comments on this information collection for which it intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Announcement of Grant Application Deadlines
Document Number: 2015-12222
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-05-22
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), announces its Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) Grant Program application window for Fiscal Year (FY) 2015. RUS has published on its Web site http:// www.rd.usda.gov/newsroom/notices-solicitation-applications-no sas the amount of funding received through the final appropriations act. Expenses incurred in developing applications will be at the applicant's risk. In addition to announcing the application window, RUS announces the minimum and maximum amounts for DLT grants applicable for the fiscal year. The DLT Grant Program regulations can be found at 7 CFR part 1703, subparts D through G.
Strategic Economic and Community Development
Document Number: 2015-12163
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-05-20
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
This interim rule implements Section 6025, Strategic Economic and Community Development, under the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill). Unless the Agency provides otherwise, the Agency will reserve up to 10 percent of the funds appropriated to certain Rural Development (RD) programs each fiscal year to fund projects that support the implementation of strategic economic and community development plans across multi-jurisdictional areas. The programs from which funds will be reserved are community facility programs, water and waste disposal programs, and rural business and cooperative development programs. To be eligible for the reserved funds, projects must be first eligible for funding under the programs from which the funds are reserved. In addition, projects must be carried out solely in rural areas. Any reserved funding that is not obligated by June 30 of the fiscal year in which the funds were reserved will be returned to the programs' regular funding accounts.
Value-Added Producer Grant Program
Document Number: 2015-10441
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-05-08
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Business-Cooperative Service (Agency) is publishing this final rule for the Value-Added Producer Grant (VAPG) program. This final rule modifies the interim rule for VAPG based on comments received on the interim rule, which was published on February 23, 2011, on the Agricultural Act of 2014 (2014 Farm Bill), and on a listening session, held on April 25, 2014, on the VAPG provisions in the 2014 Farm Bill. Under the final rule, grants will be made to help eligible producers of agricultural commodities enter into or expand value-added activities including the development of feasibility studies, business plans, and marketing strategies. The program also provides working capital for expenses such as implementing an existing viable marketing strategy. The program provides a priority for funding for applicants that are Beginning Farmers and Ranchers, Veteran Farmers and Ranchers, Socially- Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers, operators of Small- and Medium- sized Family Farms and Ranches, Farmer and Rancher Cooperatives and applicants that propose a Mid-Tier Value Chain project. Additional priority points will be given to Agricultural Producer Groups, Farmer or Rancher Cooperatives, and Majority-Controlled Producer-Based Business Ventures whose projects ``best contribute'' to creating or increasing marketing opportunities for Beginning Farmers and Ranchers, Veteran Farmers and Ranchers, Socially-Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers, and operators of Small- and Medium-sized Family Farms and Ranches. Further, it creates two reserved funds, each of which will include 10 percent of program funds each year, for applications that support opportunities for Beginning and Socially-Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers and for proposed projects that develop mid-tier value marketing chains.
Brazos Electric Power Cooperative, Inc.; Notice of Intent To Hold a Public Workshop and Prepare an Environmental Assessment
Document Number: 2015-10943
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-05-07
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS) intends to hold a public scoping workshop and prepare an Environmental Assessment (EA) in connection with possible impacts related to the construction and operation of a new gas-fired combustion turbine generation facility. The project, Hill County Generation Facility, is proposed by Brazos Electric Power Cooperative, Inc. (Brazos), of Waco, Texas. RUS may provide financial assistance for the project. The public scoping workshop is scheduled for Thursday, May 21, 2015, from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. in the Community Hall of the First Presbyterian Church at 106 N. Lamar, Itasca, TX 76055.
Broadband Opportunity Council Webinar
Document Number: 2015-10580
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-05-06
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service, Department of Commerce, National Telecommunications and Information Administration
In a request for comment (RFC) published in the Federal Register on April 29, 2015, the Departments of Agriculture and Commerce, which are co-chairing the Broadband Opportunity Council (Council), asked for public input on barriers that are hampering deployment of broadband, ways to promote public and private investment in broadband, challenges facing areas that lack access to broadband, and ways to measure broadband availability, adoption, and speed.\1\ To explain the RFC's purpose and objectives, and to allow an opportunity for members of the public to pose questions regarding the RFC, the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will host a webinar on May 20, 2015.
Broadband Opportunity Council Notice and Request for Comment
Document Number: 2015-09996
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-04-29
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service, Department of Commerce, National Telecommunications and Information Administration
In furtherance of the Presidential Memorandum entitled Expanding Broadband Deployment and Adoption by Addressing Regulatory Barriers and Encouraging Investment and Training, which established the Broadband Opportunity Council (Council), the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) are requesting public comment to inform the deliberations of the Council.\1\ The Council's objectives are to: (i) Engage with industry and other stakeholders to understand ways the government can better support the needs of communities seeking to expand broadband access and adoption; (ii) identify regulatory barriers unduly impeding broadband deployment, adoption, or competition; (iii) survey and report back on existing programs that currently support or could be modified to support broadband competition, deployment, or adoption; and (iv) take all necessary actions to remove these barriers and realign existing programs to increase broadband competition, deployment, and adoption.\2\ We welcome input from all interested parties, including the stakeholder groups identified in the Presidential Memorandum.
Rural Development Regulations-Update to FmHA References and to Census References
Document Number: 2015-06627
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-03-26
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service
This document corrects technical errors in the direct final rule that appeared in the Federal Register on February 24, 2015, entitled ``Rural Development RegulationsUpdate to FmHA References and to Census Regulations.''