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Federal Register Summary for week of 24 February


  • National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board Notice of Meeting

    AGENCY: Research, Education, and Economics, USDA.

    ACTION: Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App 2, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announces a meeting of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board.

    DATES: The National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board will meet March 28-29, 2012. The public may file written comments before or up to two weeks after the meeting with the contact person.

    ADDRESSES: The meeting will take place at the Texas A&M AgriLife, Agriculture and Life Sciences Building, 600 John Kimbrough Boulevard, College Station, Texas 77843. Written comments from the public may be sent to the Contact Person identified in this notice at: The National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board Office, Room 3901 South Building, United States Department of Agriculture, STOP 0321, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-0321.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: J. Robert Burk, Executive Director or Shirley Morgan-Jordan, Program Support Coordinator, National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board; telephone: (202) 536-6547; fax: (202) 720-6199; or email: or

  • Notice of the Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture Meeting

    AGENCY: Office of the Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics Agricultural Research Service, USDA.

    ACTION: Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. 2, the United States Department of Agriculture announces a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture (AC21).

    DATES: The meeting dates are March 5-6, 2012, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

    ADDRESSES: U.S. Access Board Conference Room, 1331 F Street NW., Suite 800, Washington, DC 20004-1111.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michael Schechtman, Designated Federal Official, Office of the Deputy Secretary, USDA, 202B Jamie L. Whitten Federal Building, 12th and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250; Telephone (202) 720-3817; Fax (202) 690-4265; Email

  • Commerce

  • National Sea Grant Advisory Board

    AGENCY: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Commerce.

    ACTION: Notice of solicitation for nominations for potential National Sea Grant Advisory Board members and notice of public meeting.

    SUMMARY: This notice responds to Section 209 of the Sea Grant Program Improvement Act of 1976 (Public Law 94-461, 33 U.S.C. 1128), which requires the Secretary of Commerce to solicit nominations at least once a year for membership on the National Sea Grant Advisory Board, a Federal Advisory Committee that provides advice on the implementation of the National Sea Grant College Program. This notice also sets forth the schedule and proposed agenda of a forthcoming meeting of the National Sea Grant Advisory Board.

    DATES: Solicitation of nominations is open ended. Resumes may be sent to the address specified at any time. The announced meeting is scheduled for Monday, March 5, 2012 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST and Tuesday, March 6, 2012, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. EST.

    ADDRESSES: Nominations should be sent to Ms. Elizabeth Ban, Designated Federal Officer, National Sea Grant College Program, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 11843, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910, (301) 734-1082.

    The March meeting will be held at The Melrose Hotel, 2430 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20037.

    Status: The meeting will be open to public participation with a 15- minute public comment period on March 5 at 4:30 p.m. EST (check Web site to confirm time.) The Board expects that public statements presented at its meetings will not be repetitive of previously submitted verbal or written statements. In general, each individual or group making a verbal presentation will be limited to a total time of three (3) minutes. Written comments should be received by the Designated Federal Officer by February 27, 2012 to provide sufficient time for Board review. Written comments received after February 27, 2012, will be distributed to the Board, but may not be reviewed prior to the meeting date. Seats will be available on a first-come, first- serve basis.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Elizabeth Ban, Designated Federal Officer, National Sea Grant College Program, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 11843, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910, (301) 734-1082.

  • Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Application and Reports for Scientific Research and Enhancement Permits Under the Endangered Species Act

    AGENCY: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION: Notice.

    SUMMARY: The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

    DATES: Written comments must be submitted on or before April 23, 2012.

    ADDRESSES: Direct all written comments to Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet at

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should be directed to Gary Rule, (503) 230-5424 or


    I. Abstract

    This request is for an extension of a currently approved information collection.

    The Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) imposed prohibitions against the taking of endangered species. Section 10 of the ESA allows permits authorizing the taking of endangered species for research/enhancement purposes. The corresponding regulations established procedures for persons to apply for such permits. In addition, the regulations set forth specific reporting requirements for such permit holders. The regulations contain two sets of information collections: (1) Applications for research/enhancement permits, and (2) reporting requirements for permits issued.

    The required information is used to evaluate the impacts of the proposed activity on endangered species, to make the determinations required by the ESA prior to issuing a permit, and to establish appropriate permit conditions. To issue permits under ESA Section 10(a)(1)(A), the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) must determine that (1) such exceptions were applied for in good faith, (2) if granted and exercised, will not operate to the disadvantage of such endangered species, and (3) will be consistent with the purposes and policy set forth in Section 2 of the ESA.

    The currently approved application and reporting requirements apply to Pacific marine and anadromous fish species; requirements regarding other species are being addressed in a separate information collection.

    II. Method of Collection

    Submissions may be in paper or electronic format.

    III. Data

    OMB Control Number: 0648-0402.

    • Form Number: None.
    • Type of Review: Regular submission (extension of a currently approved collection).
    • Affected Public: Federal government; State, local, or tribal government; business or other for-profit organizations.
    • Estimated Number of Respondents: 160.
    • Estimated Time per Response: Permit applications, 12 hours; permit modification requests 6 hours; and annual or final reports, 2 hours.
    • Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 835.
    • Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $500 in recordkeeping/reporting costs.

    IV. Request for Comments

    Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval of this information collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

  • Health and Human Services

  • Chairpersons, Boards of Scientific Counselors for Institutes and Centers at the National Institutes of Health, Notice of Meeting

    Notice is hereby given of a meeting scheduled by the Deputy Director for Intramural Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) with the Chairpersons of the Boards of Scientific Counselors. The Boards of Scientific Counselors are advisory groups to the Scientific Directors of the Intramural Research Programs at the NIH. This meeting will take place on March 2, 2012, from 10 am to 2 pm, at the NIH, 1 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD, Building 1, Room 151. The meeting will include a discussion of policies and procedures that apply to the regular review of NIH intramural scientists and their work.

    The meeting will be open to the public, with attendance limited to space available. Individuals who plan to attend and need special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should contact Mr. Joe Kleinman at the Office of Intramural Research, NIH, Building 1, Room 160, Tel. (301) 496-1921, Fax (301) 402-4273, or email in advance of the meeting.

  • National Institutes of Health Loan Repayment Programs

    AGENCY: National Institutes of Health, HHS.

    ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

    SUMMARY: The National Institutes of Health (NIH) proposes to rescind the current regulations governing two of its eight loan repayment programs and issue in their place a new consolidated set of regulations governing all of the NIH Loan Repayment Programs (LRPs). There are currently eight programs, including three for researchers employed by the NIH (Intramural LRPs) and five for non-NIH scientists (Extramural LRPs). The Intramural LRPs include the Loan Repayment Program for Research with Respect to Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (or AIDS Research LRP); Loan Repayment Program for General Research (or General Research LRP), which includes a program for the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Fellows; and Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Researchers from Disadvantaged Backgrounds (or Clinical Research LRP for Individuals from Disadvantaged Backgrounds). The Extramural LRPs include the Loan Repayment Program for Contraception and Infertility Research (or Contraception and Infertility Research LRP); Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Researchers from Disadvantaged Backgrounds (or Clinical Research LRP for Individuals from Disadvantaged Backgrounds); Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Research (or Clinical Research LRP); Loan Repayment Program for Pediatric Research (or Pediatric Research LRP); and Loan Repayment Program for Health Disparities Research (or Health Disparities Research LRP). This rule compliments efforts afforded by EO 13563.

    DATES: Comments must be received on or before April 23, 2012 in order to ensure that NIH will be able to consider the comments in preparing the final rule.

    ADDRESSES: Persons and organizations interested in submitting comments, identified by RIN 0925-AA43 and Docket Number NIH-2008-0003, may do so by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Submissions: You may submit electronic comments in the following way:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    To ensure timelier processing of comments, NIH is no longer accepting comments submitted to the agency by email. The NIH encourages you to continue to submit electronic comments by using the Federal eRulemaking Portal:

    Written Submissions: You may submit written comments in the following ways:

    Fax: 301-402-0169.

    Mail: Attention Jerry Moore, NIH Regulations Officer, Office of Management Assessment, NIH, 6011 Executive Boulevard, Suite 601, MSC 7669, Rockville, MD 20852-7669.

    Hand delivery/courier (for paper, disk, or CD-ROM submissions): Attention: Jerry Moore, 6011 Executive Boulevard, Suite 601, Rockville, MD 20852-7669.

    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to the eRulemaking Portal and insert the docket number provided in brackets in the heading on page one of this document into the "Search'' box and follow the prompts.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jerry Moore, NIH Regulations Officer, Office of Management Assessment, NIH, 6011 Executive Boulevard, Room 601, MSC 7669, Rockville, MD 20892; by email; by fax 301-402-0169; or by telephone 301-496-4607 (not a toll-free number) for information about the rulemaking process. For program information contact: the NIH Division of Loan Repayment by email or telephone 866-849- 4047. Information regarding the requirements, application deadline dates, and an online application for the NIH Loan Repayment Programs may be obtained from the NIH Loan Repayment Program Web site,

  • Request for Information (RFI): Input Into the Deliberations of the Council of Councils Working Group on the Use of Chimpanzees in NIH- Supported Research

    SUMMARY: The National Institutes of Health Council of Councils has established a working group to provide recommendations to the Council on: (1) Implementing the guiding principles and criteria contained within the Institute of Medicine report, "Chimpanzees in Biomedical and Behavioral Research: Assessing the Necessity'', and (2) the size and placement of the research active and inactive populations of NIH- owned or -supported chimpanzees. See for the working group's charge and roster. The NIH is seeking public input to inform the working group's deliberations.

    Background: The use of animals in research has enabled scientists to identify new ways to treat illness, extend life, and improve health and well-being. Chimpanzees are our closest relatives in the animal kingdom, providing exceptional insights into human biology and the need for special consideration and respect. While used very selectively and in limited numbers for medical research, chimpanzees have served an important role in advancing human health in the past. However, new methods and technologies developed by the biomedical community have provided alternatives to the use of chimpanzees in several areas of research.

    In December 2010, the National Institutes of Health commissioned a study by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to assess whether chimpanzees are or will be necessary for biomedical and behavioral research. The IOM issued its findings on December 15, 2011, with a primary recommendation that the use of chimpanzees in research be guided by a set of principles and criteria. The committee proposed three principles which must all be applied to analyze current and potential future research using chimpanzees.

    1. That the knowledge gained must be necessary to advance the public's health;
    2. There must be no other research model by which the knowledge could be obtained, and the research cannot be ethically performed on human subjects; and
    3. The animals used in the proposed research must be maintained either in ethologically appropriate physical and social environments (i.e., as would occur in their natural environment) or in natural habitats.

    Based on its deliberations, the IOM committee concluded that "while the chimpanzee has been a valuable animal model in past research, most current use of chimpanzees for biomedical research is unnecessary.'' The committee also concluded, however, that the following areas may continue to require the use of chimpanzees: a limited number of ongoing studies on monoclonal antibody therapies, research on comparative genomics, and non-invasive studies of social and behavioral factors that affect the development, prevention, or treatment of disease. The committee was unable to reach consensus on the necessity of the chimpanzee for the development of prophylactic hepatitis C virus vaccine. While the committee encouraged NIH to continue development of non-chimpanzee models and technologies, it acknowledged that new, emerging, or re-emerging diseases may present challenges that may require the use of chimpanzees.

    The Working Group is gathering input from various sources, including researchers, academic institutions, foundations, scientific societies, government and regulatory agencies, industry, and the public, to help inform the development of its recommendations to the Council of Councils on actions the NIH can take to implement the IOM recommendations and to consider the size and placement of the active and inactive populations of NIH-owned or -supported chimpanzees. The following are areas of their charge and examples of questions within each which might need to be considered when developing recommendations.

    Developing a plan for implementation of the IOM's guiding principles and criteria.

    Factors to consider in reviewing currently active NIH- supported research using chimpanzees to advise on which studies currently meet the principles and criteria defined by the IOM report and advising on the process for closing studies if any do not comply with the IOM recommendations. For example: Criteria to assess "minimally invasive'' procedures for comparative genomics and behavioral research and "ethologically appropriate'' physical and social environments; Criteria to balance phasing out of the existing research without causing "unacceptable losses to research programs'' or an unacceptable "impact on the animals''.

    Factors to consider when advising on the size and placement of active and inactive populations of NIH-owned or-supported chimpanzees as a result of implementing the IOM recommendations. For example: Ways to address capacity issues that would accompany an increase in 'inactive' animals; Factors to consider in transitioning the animals that are newly inactive; How many and what would be the characteristics of animals held in reserve for future research, if any; The number of animals needed to maintain a viable number of research na[iuml]ve animals but also genetic and social stability and sufficient diversity for unanticipated research needs.

    A review process for considering whether potential future use of the chimpanzee in NIH-supported research is scientifically necessary and consistent with the IOM principles. For example: Factors to consider in determining whether other models (e.g., in vitro, other in vivo) would be a "suitable model'' for answering the research question; Research areas where alternative model development is recommended; Whether NIH should have a plan to maintain a minimal population of federally-owned chimpanzees and input on the design of the plan; Circumstances under which chimpanzees should be considered as a model for "a new, emerging, or reemerging disease or disorder that may present challenges to treatment, prevention, and/or control that defy non-chimpanzee models and available technologies''; Characteristics of the oversight committee responsible for reviewing future research proposals and determining whether they are consistent with the IOM criteria and whether they can be conducted.

    Information Requested: To ensure a thorough and comprehensive evaluation of the issues underlying the implementation of the IOM Report's guiding principles and criteria and the size and placement of NIH-owned or -supported animals, input is being sought from the biomedical research community, including:

    • Foundations
    • Scientific societies
    • Government and regulatory agencies
    • Industry
    • NIH grantee institutions, and
    • The public

    Input is sought for each of the areas identified above. For any of the areas identified above and any other specific areas you believe are worthy of consideration by the working group, please identify the critical issues(s) and impact(s) on institutions, scientists, and the mission of NIH to perform research to improve human health.

    Response to this RFI is voluntary. Responders are free to address any or all of the above items. Please note that the Government will not pay for response preparation or for the use of any information contained in the response. The NIH may make all responses available, including name of the responder. In addition, NIH will prepare and make available a summary of all input received which is responsive to this RFI.

    How To Submit a Response: All comments must be submitted electronically to Comments must pertain to the category for which feedback is requested and must conform to the word limit indicated. Responses to this RFI will be accepted through April 10, 2012. You will see an electronic confirmation acknowledging receipt of your response, but will not receive individualized feedback on any suggestions. No basis for claims against the U.S. Government shall arise as a result of a response to this request for information or from the Government's use of such information.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Specific questions about this RFI should be directed to the following email address:

  • Interior

  • Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Publishing Notice of Receipt of Captive-Bred Wildlife Registration Applications

    AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

    ACTION: Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to amend the regulations that implement the Endangered Species Act (Act) by establishing public notice and comment procedures for applications to conduct certain otherwise prohibited activities under the Act that are authorized under the Captive Bred Wildlife (CBW) regulations. This action would add procedural requirements to the processing of applications for registration under the CBW regulations. Notices of receipt of each application would be published in the Federal Register, and the Service would accept public comment on each application for 30 days. If the registration were granted, the Service would publish certain findings in the Federal Register. In addition, for persons meeting the criteria for registering under the CBW Program, each registration could remain effective for 5 years.

    DATES: We will accept comments received or postmarked on or before March 22, 2012.

    ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by one of the following methods:

    Electronically: Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: In the Enter Keyword or ID box, enter FWS-R9-IA- 2011-0093, which is the docket number for this rulemaking. You may submit a comment by clicking on "Send a Comment''.

    By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-R9-IA-2011-0093; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, MS 2042-PDM; Arlington, VA 22203.

    We will not accept emails or faxes. We will post all comments on This generally means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see the Public Comments section at the end of SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for further information about submitting comments).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Timothy J. Van Norman, Chief, Branch of Permits, Division of Management Authority, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 212, Arlington, VA 22203; telephone 703-358-2104; fax 703-358-2281. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-877-8339.

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration

  • NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    AGENCY: National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

    ACTION: Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, Public Law 92-463, as amended, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration announces a meeting of the NASA Advisory Council (NAC).

    DATES: Thursday, March 8, 2012, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., local time and Friday, March 9, 2012, 8 a.m.-12 p.m., local time.

    ADDRESSES: NASA Headquarters, 300 E Street SW., Room 9H40, (PRC), Washington, DC 20456.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Marla King, NAC Administrative Officer, National Aeronautics and Space Administration Headquarters, Washington, DC 20546, 202/358-1148.

  • National Science Foundation

  • National Science Board; Sunshine Act Meetings; Notice

    The National Science Board's Committee on Programs and Plans Task Force on Unsolicited Mid-Scale Research, pursuant to NSF regulations (45 CFR part 614), the National Science Foundation Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1862n-5), and the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b), hereby gives notice in regard to the scheduling of a teleconference for the transaction of National Science Board business and other matters specified, as follows:

    DATE AND TIME: Monday, February 27; 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m. EST.

    SUBJECT MATTER: (1) Co-Chair's opening remarks; (2) Discussion of the final report of the NSB Task Force on Unsolicited Mid-Scale Research; and (3) Update on data gathering activities.

    STATUS: Open.

    LOCATION: This meeting will be held by teleconference at the National Science Board Office, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA 22230. A public listening room will be available for this teleconference meeting. All visitors must contact the Board Office [call 703-292-7000 or send an email message to] at least 24 hours prior to the teleconference for the public room number and to arrange for a visitor's badge. All visitors must report to the NSF visitor desk located in the lobby at the 9th and N. Stuart Streets entrance on the day of the teleconference to receive a visitor's badge.

    UPDATES AND POINT OF CONTACT: Please refer to the National Science Board Web site for additional information and schedule updates (time, place, subject matter or status of meeting) may be found at Point of contact for this meeting is: Matthew B. Wilson, National Science Board Office, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA 22230. Telephone: (703) 292-7000.

  • Office of Science and Technology Policy

  • President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST)

    AGENCY: Department of Energy, DOE.

    ACTION: Notice of partially closed meeting.

    SUMMARY: This notice sets forth the schedule and summary agenda for a partially closed meeting of the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), and describes the functions of the Council. Notice of this meeting is required under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C., App.

    DATES: Friday, March 9, 2012, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (EST).

    ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, (in the Root Room) at 1779 Massachusetts Avenue NW., Washington, DC, .

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Information regarding the meeting agenda, time, location, and how to register for the meeting is available on the PCAST Web site at: A live video webcast and an archive of the webcast after the event are expected to be available at The archived video will be available within one week of the meeting. Questions about the meeting should be directed to Dr. Deborah D. Stine, PCAST Executive Director, by email at:, or by telephone at (202) 456-6006. Please note that public seating for this meeting is limited and is available on a first-come, first-served basis.