Civil Monetary Penalty Annual Inflation Adjustment

CourtNational Transportation Safety Board
Citation87 FR 2352
Publication Date14 January 2022
Record Number2022-00726
2352
Federal Register / Vol. 87, No. 10 / Friday, January 14, 2022 / Rules and Regulations
By the Commission.
William Cody,
Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2022–00712 Filed 1–13–22; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6730–02–P
NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION
SAFETY BOARD
49 CFR Part 831
[Docket No.: NTSB–2022–0001]
RIN 3147–AA24
Civil Monetary Penalty Annual Inflation
Adjustment
AGENCY
: National Transportation Safety
Board (NTSB).
ACTION
: Final rule.
SUMMARY
: Pursuant to the Federal Civil
Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act
Improvements Act of 2015, this final
rule provides the 2022 adjustment to the
civil penalties that the agency may
assess against a person for violating
certain NTSB statutes and regulations.
DATES
: This final rule is effective on
January 14, 2022.
ADDRESSES
: A copy of this final rule,
published in the Federal Register (FR),
is available at https://
www.regulations.gov (Docket ID Number
NTSB–2022–0001).
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
:
Kathleen Silbaugh, General Counsel,
(202) 314–6080 or rulemaking@ntsb.gov.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION
:
I. Background
The Federal Civil Penalties Inflation
Adjustment Act Improvements Act of
2015 (the 2015 Act) requires, in
pertinent part, agencies to make an
annual adjustment for inflation by
January 15th every year. OMB, M–16–
06, Implementation of the Federal Civil
Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act
Improvements Act of 2015 (Feb. 24,
2016). The Office of Management and
Budget (OMB) annually publishes
guidance on the adjustment multiplier
to assist agencies in calculating the
mandatory annual adjustments for
inflation.
The NTSB’s most recent adjustment
was for fiscal year (FY) 2021, allowing
the agency to impose a civil penalty up
to $1,742, effective January 15, 2021, on
a person who violates 49 U.S.C. 1132
(Civil aircraft accident investigations),
1134(b) (Inspection, testing,
preservation, and moving of aircraft and
parts), 1134(f)(1) (Autopsies), or 1136(g)
(Prohibited actions when providing
assistance to families of passengers
involved in aircraft accidents). Civil
Monetary Penalty Annual Inflation
Adjustment, 86 FR 1809 (Jan. 11, 2021).
OMB has since published updated
guidance for FY 2022. OMB, M–22–07,
Implementation of Penalty Inflation
Adjustments for 2022, Pursuant to the
Federal Civil Penalties Inflation
Adjustment Act Improvements Act of
2015 (Dec. 15, 2021). Accordingly, this
final rule reflects the NTSB’s 2022
annual inflation adjustment and updates
the maximum civil penalty from $1,742
to $1,850.
II. The 2022 Annual Adjustment
The 2022 annual adjustment is
calculated by multiplying the applicable
maximum civil penalty amount by the
cost-of-living adjustment multiplier,
which is based on the Consumer Price
Index and rounding to the nearest
dollar. OMB, M–22–07, Implementation
of Penalty Inflation Adjustments for
2022, Pursuant to the Federal Civil
Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act
Improvements Act of 2015 (Dec. 15,
2021). For FY 2022, OMB’s guidance
states that the cost-of-living adjustment
multiplier is 1.06222.
Accordingly, multiplying the current
penalty of $1,742 by 1.06222 equals
$1,850.38724, which rounded to the
nearest dollar equals $1,850. This
updated maximum penalty for the
upcoming fiscal year applies only to
civil penalties assessed after the
effective date of this final rule. The next
civil penalty adjustment for inflation
will be calculated by January 15, 2023.
III. Regulatory Analysis
The Office of Information and
Regulatory Affairs Administrator has
determined agency regulations that
exclusively implement the annual
adjustment are consistent with OMB’s
annual guidance, and have an annual
impact of less than $100 million are
generally not significant regulatory
actions under Executive Order (E.O.)
12866. OMB, M–22–07, Implementation
of Penalty Inflation Adjustments for
2022, Pursuant to the Federal Civil
Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act
Improvements Act of 2015 (Dec. 15,
2021). An assessment of its potential
costs and benefits under E.O. 12866,
Regulatory Planning and Review and
E.O. 13563, Improving Regulation and
Regulatory Review is not required
because this final rule is not a
‘‘significant regulatory action.’’
Likewise, this rule does not require
analyses under the Unfunded Mandates
Reform Act of 1995 because this final
rule is not significant.
The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5
U.S.C. 801 et seq.) requires each agency
to review its rulemaking to assess the
potential impact on small entities,
unless the agency determines a rule is
not expected to have a significant
economic impact on a substantial
number of small entities. In accordance
with 5 U.S.C. 605(b), the NTSB certifies
that the final rule will not have a
significant economic impact on a
substantial number of small entities;
only those entities that are determined
to have violated Federal law and
regulations would be affected by the
increase in penalties made by this rule.
This final rule complies with all
applicable standards in sections 3(a)
and 3(b)(2) of E.O. 12988 ‘‘Civil Justice
Reform,’’ to minimize litigation,
eliminate ambiguity, and reduce
burden. In addition, the NTSB has
evaluated this rule under E.O. 12630,
‘‘Governmental Actions and Interference
with Constitutionally Protected Property
Rights’’; and E.O. 13045, ‘‘Protection of
Children from Environmental Health
Risks and Safety Risks.’’
The NTSB does not anticipate this
rule will have a substantial direct effect
on state government or will preempt
state law. Accordingly, this rule does
not have implications for federalism
under E.O. 13132, Federalism.
The NTSB also evaluated this rule
under E.O. 13175, Consultation and
Coordination with Indian Tribal
Governments. The agency has
concluded that this final rule will not
have a substantial direct effect on one or
more Indian tribes, on the relationship
between the Federal Government and
Indian tribes, or on the distribution of
power and responsibilities between the
Federal Government and Indian tribes.
The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995
is inapplicable because the final rule
imposes no new information reporting
or recordkeeping necessitating clearance
by OMB.
The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980
does not apply because, as a final rule,
this action is not subject to prior notice
and comment. See 5 U.S.C. 604(a).
The NTSB has concluded that this
final rule neither violates nor requires
further consideration under the
aforementioned Executive orders and
acts.
List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 831
Aircraft accidents, Aircraft incidents,
Aviation safety, Hazardous materials
transportation, Highway safety,
Investigations, Marine safety, Pipeline
safety, Railroad safety.
Accordingly, for the reasons stated in
the Preamble, the NTSB amends 49 CFR
part 831 as follows:
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1
The Board also has various criminal penalty
authority, enforceable in a federal criminal court.
Congress has not, however, authorized federal
agencies to adjust statutorily prescribed criminal
penalty provisions for inflation, and this rule does
not address those provisions.
PART 831—INVESTIGATION
PROCEDURES
1. The authority citation for part 831
continues to read as follows:
Authority: 49 U.S.C. 1113(f).
Section 831.15 also issued under Public
Law 101–410, 104 Stat. 890, amended by
Public Law 114–74, sec. 701, 129 Stat. 584
(28 U.S.C. 2461 note).
§ 831.15 [Amended]
2. Amend § 831.15 by removing the
dollar amount ‘‘$1,742’’ and add in its
place ‘‘$1,850’’.
Jennifer Homendy,
Chair.
[FR Doc. 2022–00726 Filed 1–13–22; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7533–01–P
SURFACE TRANSPORTATION BOARD
49 CFR Part 1022
[Docket No. EP 716 (Sub-No. 7)]
Civil Monetary Penalties—2022
Adjustment
AGENCY
: Surface Transportation Board.
ACTION
: Final rule.
SUMMARY
: The Surface Transportation
Board (Board) is issuing a final rule to
implement the annual inflationary
adjustment to its civil monetary
penalties, pursuant to the Federal Civil
Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act
Improvements Act of 2015.
DATES
: This final rule is effective
January 14, 2022.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
:
Amy Ziehm at (202) 245–0391.
Assistance for the hearing impaired is
available through the Federal Relay
Service at (800) 877–8339.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION
:
I. Background
The Federal Civil Penalties Inflation
Adjustment Act Improvements Act of
2015 (2015 Act), enacted as part of the
Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, Public
Law 114–74, sec. 701, 129 Stat. 584,
599–601, requires agencies to adjust
their civil penalties for inflation
annually, beginning on July 1, 2016, and
no later than January 15 of every year
thereafter. In accordance with the 2015
Act, annual inflation adjustments are to
be based on the percent change between
the Consumer Price Index for all Urban
Consumers (CPI–U) for October of the
previous year and the October CPI–U of
the year before that. Penalty level
adjustments should be rounded to the
nearest dollar.
II. Discussion
The statutory definition of civil
monetary penalty covers various civil
penalty provisions under the Rail (Part
A); Motor Carriers, Water Carriers,
Brokers, and Freight Forwarders (Part
B); and Pipeline Carriers (Part C)
provisions of the Interstate Commerce
Act, as amended. The Board’s civil (and
criminal) penalty authority related to
rail transportation appears at 49 U.S.C.
11901–11908. The Board’s penalty
authority related to motor carriers, water
carriers, brokers, and freight forwarders
appears at 49 U.S.C. 14901–14916. The
Board’s penalty authority related to
pipeline carriers appears at 49 U.S.C.
16101–16106.
1
The Board has
regulations at 49 CFR pt. 1022 that
codify the method set forth in the 2015
Act for annually adjusting for inflation
the civil monetary penalties within the
Board’s jurisdiction.
As set forth in this final rule, the
Board is amending 49 CFR part 1022 to
make an annual inflation adjustment to
the civil monetary penalties in
conformance with the requirements of
the 2015 Act. The adjusted penalties set
forth in the rule will apply only to
violations that occur after the effective
date of this regulation.
In accordance with the 2015 Act, the
annual adjustment adopted here is
calculated by multiplying each current
penalty by the cost-of-living adjustment
factor of 1.06222, which reflects the
percentage change between the October
2021 CPI–U (276.589) and the October
2020 CPI–U (260.388). The table at the
end of this decision shows the statutory
citation for each civil penalty, a
description of the provision, the
adjusted statutory civil penalty level for
2021, and the adjusted statutory civil
penalty level for 2022.
III. Final Rule
The final rule set forth at the end of
this decision is being issued without
notice and comment pursuant to the
rulemaking provision of the
Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5
U.S.C. 553(b)(B), which does not require
that process ‘‘when the agency for good
cause finds’’ that public notice and
comment are ‘‘unnecessary.’’ Here,
Congress has mandated that the agency
make an annual inflation adjustment to
its civil monetary penalties. The Board
has no discretion to set alternative
levels of adjusted civil monetary
penalties, because the amount of the
inflation adjustment must be calculated
in accordance with the statutory
formula. Given the absence of
discretion, the Board has determined
that there is good cause to promulgate
this rule without soliciting public
comment and to make this regulation
effective immediately upon publication.
IV. Regulatory Flexibility Statement
The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA),
as amended by the Small Business
Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of
1996, 5 U.S.C. 601–612, generally
requires an agency to prepare a
regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule
subject to notice and comment
rulemaking requirements, unless the
agency certifies that the rule will not
have a significant economic impact on
a substantial number of small entities.
Because the Board has determined that
notice and comment are not required
under the APA for this rulemaking, the
requirements of the RFA do not apply.
V. Congressional Review Act
Pursuant to the Congressional Review
Act, 5 U.S.C. 801–808, the Office of
Information and Regulatory Affairs has
designated this rule as a non-major rule,
as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).
VI. Paperwork Reduction Act
This final rule does not contain a new
or amended information collection
requirement subject to the Paperwork
Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 3501–
3521.
List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 1022
Administrative practice and
procedures, Brokers, Civil penalties,
Freight forwarders, Motor carriers,
Pipeline carriers, Rail carriers, Water
carriers.
It is ordered:
1. The Board amends its rules as set
forth in this decision. Notice of the final
rule will be published in the Federal
Register.
2. This decision is effective on its date
of publication in the Federal Register.
Decided: January 10, 2022.
By the Board, Board Members Fuchs,
Hedlund, Oberman, Primus, and Schultz.
Stefan Rice,
Clearance Clerk.
For the reasons set forth in the
preamble, part 1022 of title 49, chapter
X, of the Code of Federal Regulations is
amended as follows:
PART 1022—CIVIL MONETARY
PENALTY INFLATION ADJUSTMENT
1. Revise the authority citation for part
1022 to read as follows:
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