Ohio Regulatory Program

Cited as:85 FR 26413
Court:Surface Mining Reclamation And Enforcement Office
Publication Date:04 May 2020
Record Number:2020-08805
Federal Register, Volume 85 Issue 86 (Monday, May 4, 2020)
[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 86 (Monday, May 4, 2020)]
                [Proposed Rules]
                [Pages 26413-26418]
                From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
                [FR Doc No: 2020-08805]
                =======================================================================
                -----------------------------------------------------------------------
                DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
                Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
                30 CFR Part 935
                [SATS No. OH-258-FOR; Docket ID: OSM-2017-0005; S1D1S SS08011000
                SX064A000 201S180110 S2D2S SS08011000 SX064A000 20XS501520]
                Ohio Regulatory Program
                AGENCY: Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Interior.
                ACTION: Proposed rule; public comment period and opportunity for public
                hearing on proposed amendment.
                -----------------------------------------------------------------------
                SUMMARY: We, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
                (OSMRE), are announcing receipt of a proposed amendment to the Ohio
                regulatory program (hereinafter, the Ohio program) under the Surface
                Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA or the Act). Through
                this proposed amendment, Ohio is requesting to modify 41 rules to the
                Ohio Administrative Code, including, but not limited to, permit
                applications, hydrologic map and cross sections, general map
                requirements, requirements for permits for special categories of
                mining, underground mining permit application, small operator
                assistance program, and self-bonding etc. This document gives the times
                and locations that the Ohio program and this proposed amendment to that
                program are available for your inspection, the comment period during
                which you may submit written comments on the amendment, and the
                procedures that we will follow for the public hearing, if one is
                requested.
                DATES: We will accept written comments on this amendment until 4 p.m.,
                Eastern Standard Time (e.s.t.), June 3, 2020. If requested, we will
                hold a public hearing on the amendment on May 29, 2020. We will accept
                requests to speak at a hearing until 4 p.m., e.s.t. on May 19, 2020.
                ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by SATS No. OH-258-FOR,
                by any of the following methods:
                 Mail/Hand Delivery: Mr. Ben Owens, Field Office Director,
                Pittsburgh Field Office, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and
                Enforcement, 3 Parkway Center, Pittsburgh, Pa 15220.
                 Fax: (412) 937-2177.
                 Federal eRulemaking Portal: The amendment has been
                assigned Docket ID: OSM-2017-0005. If you would like to submit comments
                go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for
                submitting comments.
                 Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name
                and docket number for this rulemaking. For detailed instructions on
                submitting comments and additional information on the rulemaking
                process, see the ``Public Comment Procedures'' heading of the
                SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.
                 Docket: For access to the docket to review copies of the Ohio
                program, this amendment, a listing of any scheduled public hearings,
                and all written comments received in response to this document, you
                must go to the address listed below during normal business hours,
                Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. You may receive one free
                copy of the amendment by contacting OSMRE's Pittsburgh Field Office or
                the full text of the program amendment is available for you to read at
                www.regulations.gov.
                Mr. Ben Owens, Field Office Director, Pittsburgh Field Office, Office
                of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 3 Parkway Center,
                Pittsburgh, Pa 15220, Telephone: (412) 937-2827, email:
                [email protected].
                 In addition, you may review a copy of the amendment during regular
                business hours at the following location:
                [[Page 26414]]
                Mr. Dave Crow, Acting Chief, Ohio Department of Natural Resources,
                Division of Mineral Resources Management, 2045 Morse Road, Building H2,
                Telephone: (614) 265-1020, email: [email protected].
                FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Ben Owens, Field Office Director,
                Pittsburgh Field Office, 3 Parkway Center, Pittsburgh, Pa 15220.
                Telephone: (412) 937-2827, email: [email protected].
                SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
                I. Background on the Ohio Program
                II. Description of the Proposed Amendment
                III. Public Comment Procedures
                IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews
                I. Background on the Ohio Program
                 Section 503(a) of the Act permits a State to assume primacy for the
                regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation operations on non-
                Federal and non-Indian lands within its borders by demonstrating that
                its program includes, among other things, State laws and regulations
                that govern surface coal mining and reclamation operations in
                accordance with the Act and consistent with the Federal regulations.
                See 30 U.S.C. 1253(a)(1) and (7). On the basis of these criteria, the
                Secretary of the Interior conditionally approved the Ohio program on
                August 16, 1982. You can find background information on the Ohio
                program, including the Secretary's findings, the disposition of
                comments, and conditions of approval of the Ohio program in the August
                10, 1982, Federal Register (47 FR 34717). You can also find later
                actions concerning the Ohio program and program amendments at 30 CFR
                935.10, State Regulatory Program Approval; and 935.11, Conditions of
                State Regulatory Program Approval; and 935.15, Approval of Ohio
                Regulatory Program Amendments.
                II. Description of the Proposed Amendment
                 By letter dated November 20, 2015 (Administrative Record No. OH-
                2194-01), Ohio sent us an amendment to its program under SMCRA (30
                U.S.C. 1201 et seq.) Ohio seeks to revise its program to amend 41
                revised rules to the Ohio Administrative Code to include the following:
                Proposed New Rules
                 1. Section 1501:13-4-08.1--Proposed new rule--Application,
                supplemental and hydrologic maps, and cross-sections, designs and plans
                for underground workings. This new rule is proposed to contain all the
                mapping rules specific to underground workings. A companion rule,
                1501:13-4-08, is proposed to be amended to contain all the mapping
                rules for surface affectment, including surface coal mining operations
                and underground mining surface operations.
                 2. Section 1501:13-4-10--Proposed new rule with the same number and
                title--will have updated and new map symbols. The new proposed rule, is
                to be replaced. The rescinded rule with the same number and title, will
                have updated and new map symbols.
                Rule Rescissions
                 1. Section 1501:13-7-04--Rule proposed for rescission--Self-
                bonding--This rule is proposed for rescission due to the Division of
                Mineral Resources Management no longer wanting to accepting self-bonds
                as performance security.
                 2. Section 1501:13-4-10--Rule proposed for rescission--Uniform
                color code and map symbols. The current rule proposed for rescission,
                is to be replaced with a proposed new rule with the same number and
                title, which will have updated and new map symbols.
                Rule Revisions
                 Ohio's proposed rule changes are for the purpose of complying with
                the five-year-review requirements of Section 106.03 of the Ohio Revised
                Code, to make revisions that are as effective as the Federal
                requirements, to revise the mapping requirements so they are easier to
                understand and follow, to rescind the self-bonding rule and revise
                other performance bond rules so that self-bonding cannot be used as
                performance security, to allow the applicant/permittee to certify that
                a current proof of liability insurance and rider is part of the
                centralized ownership and control file, to protect underground mining
                from other underground mining and from coal exploration drilling, to
                clarify a Phase III bond release requirement related to seeding after
                minor repairs, to update the publication dates of the Code of Federal
                Regulations and the United States Code, and to make numerous
                administrative corrections and clarifications.
                A. Minor Revision to Ohio Rules
                 The minor wording, editorial, punctuation, grammatical, and
                recodification changes being addressed in this finding are non-
                substantive.
                 1. Section 1501:13-1-02--Effective date and applicability--Proposed
                to include two new rules 1501:13-3-01 and 1501:13-3-02, that became
                effective October 28,2010.
                 2. Section 1501:13-1-02--Definitions--Proposed to remove the
                definition of self bonds. The Division will no longer accept self bonds
                as performance security.
                 3. Section 1501:13-1-13--Rule references--Proposed paragraph
                renumbering.
                 4. Section 1501:13-3-01--Standards for demonstration of valid
                existing right--Proposed to change paragraph (A)(2)(b)(iv) which
                references to the life-of-mine map.
                 5. Section 1501:13-5-03--Form, conditions and terms of performance
                security--Paragraph (A)(3) is proposed to be removed. Paragraph (C)(2)
                is proposed to be revised to state that the Division will no longer
                accept self bonds as performance security.
                 6. Section 1501:13-6-03 Small operator assistance program--
                Paragraph (F)(2)(c) is proposed to revise the references to cross
                section maps and plans, since these are being moved to rules 1501:13-4-
                08 and 1501:13-4-08.1.
                 7. Section 1501:13-7-01 General requirements for providing
                performance security for coal mining and reclamation operations--
                Paragraph (E)(4) is proposed to be removed. The Division will no longer
                accept self bonds as performance security.
                 8. Section 1501:13-7-03 Form, conditions, and terms of performance
                security--Paragraphs (A)(3) and (C)(2) are proposed to be removed. The
                Division will no longer accept self bonds as performance security.
                 9. Section 1501:13-7-05 Procedures, criteria, and schedule for
                release of performance security for permits reliant on the reclamation
                forfeiture fund--Paragraph (B)(4)(a) is proposed to be removed. The
                Division will no longer accept self bonds as performance security.
                 10. Section 1501:13-7-05.1 Procedures, criteria, and schedule for
                release of performance security for permits not reliant on the
                reclamation forfeiture fund--Paragraph (B)(4)(a) is proposed to be
                removed. The Division will no longer accept self bonds as performance
                security.
                 11. Section 1501:13-7-06 Performance security forfeiture criteria
                and procedures--Paragraph (C)(4)(b) is proposed to add the word ``or''
                to the end of this paragraph, since current paragraph (c) is proposed
                to be removed. Paragraph (C)(4)(c) is proposed to be removed. The
                Division will no longer accept self bonds as performance security.
                 12. Section 1501:13-8-01 Coal exploration; performance standards--
                Paragraph (J) is proposed to correct a paragraph Reference.
                 13. Section 1501:13-9-02 Casing and sealing of drilled holes--
                Paragraph (A)
                [[Page 26415]]
                is proposed to correct grammatical errors. Paragraph (C) is proposed to
                correct grammatical errors and an addition to clarify that it is the
                Chief who makes the finding of no adverse environmental or health and
                safety effect.
                 14. Section 1501:13-9-16 Cessation of operations-- Paragraphs
                (A)(1), (A)(2) and (B)(1) are proposed to correct grammatical errors
                and use consistent terms. Paragraph (B)(1) is proposed to add a
                reference to Chapter 1513 of the Revised Code
                 15. Section 1501:13-10-01 Roads: performance standards-- Paragraphs
                (B)(2) and (G)(1)(a) are proposed to correct grammatical errors.
                Paragraph (G)(4)(f) has a sentence re-worded to clarify its meaning and
                to mirror the language of 30 CFR 816.151(d)(6) and 30 CFR
                817.151(d)(6).
                 16. Section 1501:13-12-01 Underground operations-- Paragraph (B) is
                proposed to clarify that underground operations must meet all
                applicable requirements of Chapter 1513 of the Revised Code.
                 17. Section 1501:13-13-03 Operations on prime farmland--Paragraph
                (B) has Minor corrections. Paragraph (D) has a paragraph reference
                corrected. Paragraph (E)(1) is proposed to correct grammar, the
                proposed language is to change ``of'' to ``to'' to mirror the language
                of 30 CFR 823.14 (b).
                 18. Section 1501:13-14-01 Inspections-- Paragraph (A)(2)(b) is
                proposed to move the phrase ``Conducted under a D-permit'' because it
                is outdated and no longer needed; all coal mining in Ohio is now
                conducted under D permits
                B. Revisions to Ohio's Rules That Have the Same Meaning as the
                Corresponding Provisions of the Federal Regulations
                 Ohio proposed revisions to the following rules containing language
                that is the same as or similar to the corresponding sections of the
                Federal regulations.
                 1. Section 1501:13-1-10 Availability of records-- Proposed to add
                provision (B)(2) in order for it to be as effective as the federal
                program. The federal regulations at 30 CFR 840.14 (c)(1) and (2)
                require that either a copy of the records be available for inspection
                in the county where mining is taking place or a description of the
                records and a description of the procedure for obtaining the records be
                available in the county where mining is taking place. Paragraphs
                (B)(2)(b) and (b)(i) provisions in subparagraph (b) is revised and
                (b)(i) is added for clarification to keep Ohio's program as effective
                as the federal program. The federal regulations at 30 CFR 840.14 (c)(2)
                requires that any resident of the area where mining is taking place
                either be able to inspect copies of the records in the county where the
                mining is taking place or be provided copies of the records at no
                charge. Paragraph (B)(2)(b)(ii) is revised for other persons who
                request copies of the records, the Division will follow ODNR policy in
                charging for the copies.
                 2. Section 1501:13-1-14 Incorporation by reference--Proposed
                changes to paragraphs (A) and (B) are annual updates of the editions of
                the Code of Federal Regulations and the United States Code that are
                incorporated by reference. The website address is simplified.
                Paragraphs (B)(16) and (17) are proposed to be removed from this list
                 3. Section 1501:13-4-03 Permit applications; requirements for
                legal, financial, compliance and related information--Proposed to
                change grammatical issues in paragraphs (B)(11), (C)(5), (D)(1) and
                (F)(3). Proposed to add paragraph (D)(2) requiring information about
                lands within the permit area where the private mineral estate to be
                mined has been severed from the private surface estate will be revised
                to limit this information to lands where surface disturbance will
                result from the applicant's proposed use of a surface mining method.
                Paragraphs (D)(2)(a) to (c) are revised to add ``surface disturbance''
                qualifications to all paragraphs due to HB 163 (effective September 30,
                2011). Paragraph (D)(3) is proposed to change ``title'' to ``rights''
                to mirror the language of ORC Section 1513.07 (E)(2)[euro](iii).
                Paragraphs (E)(3) and (4) are proposed to add ``measured horizontally''
                due to HB 163 (effective September 30,2011). Paragraph (H) is proposed
                to be revised by reorganizing provisions and removal of a comma to
                clarify the requirements for newspaper advertisement.
                 4. Section 1501:13-4-04 Permit application requirements for
                information on environmental resources--Proposed changes to paragraph
                (C)(2)(a)(i) include a Refererence to rule 1501:13-4-08 due to the
                revisions in paragraphs (J) and (K), as explained below. Paragraphs
                (D)(5) and(E)(3) is proposed to reference to new paragraphs (D)(6) and
                (D)(7) added. Paragraph (D)(6) is proposed to add a new paragraph and
                sub-paragraphs regarding seasonal variations which provide a standard
                method for collection and submitting water samples to identify seasonal
                variations in water quality and quantity. The provisions include a
                chart showing the flow periods and their duration. These new paragraphs
                contain the requirements of the Division's Permitting & Hydrology
                Policy/Procedure Directive 2000-2 (also known as PPD 2000-2). Paragraph
                (D)(7) is proposed to add a new paragraph regarding seasonal variations
                that states: Water quality and quantity data collected and described
                other than as required by paragraph (D)(6) of this rule may be
                submitted to identify seasonal variations in ground water and surface
                water, provided the chief determines that that alternative data are
                sufficient to identify seasonal Revised Code and the rules adopted
                thereunder. Paragraphs (J) and (K) which are the mapping provisions of
                this rule are proposed to be moved to rule 1501:13-4-08, which will
                apply to coal mining operations including underground mining surface
                operations. The mapping requirements for underground workings will be
                in rule 1501:13-4-08.1. Paragraphs (L) and (M) are proposed to be re-
                numbered (J) and (K) due to the revisions in paragraphs (J) and (K), as
                explained above. Paragraphs (L)(3), and (L)(4)(a) and (b) are proposed
                to be revised to address references changed due to the revisions in
                paragraphs (J) and (K), as explained above.
                 5. Section 1501:13-4-05 Permit application requirements for
                reclamation and operations plans--Paragraph (A)(2)(b) is proposed to
                restore the word ``necessary'' to this provision. It was removed
                effective April 30, 2009 but OSMRE requires that it be put back for the
                provision to be as effective as the Federal provision. Paragraph (G)(2)
                is proposed to add additional language per HB 163, effective September
                30, 2011, that explains that the provisions of (G)(2) do not apply in
                cases where no surface disturbance will result from the applicant's
                proposed use of auger/highwall mining. Paragraph (H)(7) is proposed as
                a new paragraph to address incorporation by reference requirements. The
                paragraph refers the reader to rule 1501:13-9-04, which contains
                information on where a copy of Soil Conservation Service Technical
                Release No. 60 can be obtained.
                 6. Section 1501:13-4-08 Hydrologic map and cross-sections--Proposed
                revision to contain all the mapping rules specific to surface coal
                mining operations, including underground mining surface operations. A
                new rule, 1501:13-4-08.1, is being proposed to contain all the mapping
                rules specific to underground workings.
                 7. Section 1501:13-4-09 General map requirements--Proposed to add
                (B) to require that a map's legend indicate which of the map symbols
                listed in rule 1501:13-4-10 appear on the map.
                [[Page 26416]]
                Paragraph (D)(1) is proposed to add supplemental map and hydrologic map
                to the list of maps that are submitted to DMRM
                 8. Section 1501:13-4-11 Maps showing reaffection of permit area--
                Paragraph (A) is proposed to eliminate the word ``former'' to clarify
                the meaning of the sentence. The rule applies to maps showing land
                affected under a permit that is reaffected under a subsequent permit.
                Paragraphs (A) and (B) are proposed to change a rule reference change
                to 1501:13-4-08 (A), because the mapping requirements of rule 1501:13-
                4-04 are proposed to be moved to that rule. Paragraph (B) is proposed
                to correct punctuation throughout. Paragraphs (B), (B)(2) and (B)(5)
                are proposed to restore valid existing rights language to correct an
                error that was made when the rule was revised in 2009. At that time,
                the phrase ``valid existing rights'' was removed from the rule, when in
                fact it needs to remain in the rule to appropriately distinguish the
                requirements of (B) from those of (A). A person having valid existing
                rights to land generally means that his or her rights were secured
                prior to the enactment of the Federal Surface Mining Control and
                Reclamation Act (SMCRA) of 1977. If land under an existing permit is
                reaffected by a person with valid existing rights, mapping and
                certification requirements for that land would follow (B), rather than
                (A). The term ``valid existing rights'' is defined in OAC 1501:13-1-02.
                 9. Section 1501:13-4-12 Requirements for permits for special
                categories of mining--Paragraph (F)(2) is proposed to change the
                references to the prime farmland requirements because of changes
                proposed for rules 1501:13-4-04 and 1501:13-4-13
                 10. Section 1501:13-4-13 Underground mining permit application
                requirements for information on environmental resources--Paragraph
                (C)(2)(a)(i) is proposed to refer to rules 1501:13-4-08 and new rule
                1501:13-4-08.1 due to the revisions in paragraphs (J) and (K), as
                explained below. Paragraphs (D)(5) and (E)(3) is proposed to reference
                to new paragraph (0)(6) and (0)(7) added. Paragraph (D)(6) is proposed
                as a new paragraph and sub-paragraphs regarding seasonal variations
                which provide a standard method for collecting and submitting water
                samples to identify seasonal variations in water quality and quantity.
                The provisions include a chart showing the flow periods and their
                duration. These new paragraphs contain the requirements of the
                Division's Permitting & Hydrology Policy/Procedure Directive 2000-2
                (also know as PPD 2000-2). The Division is proposing to put these
                requirements into rule due to a 2007 court decision, Buckeye Forest
                Council, Inc. v. Div. of Mineral Res. Mgmt., 172 Ohio App.3d 440. In
                this decision, the court stated that, since PPD 2000-2 uniformly
                applies to all mining permit application statewide, it qualifies as a
                rule and its requirements should therefore be adopted by the Division
                through rule-making. Paragraph (0)(7) is proposed as a new paragraph
                regarding seasonal variations that states: Water quality and quantity
                data collected and described other than as required by paragraph (D)(6)
                of this rule may be submitted to identify seasonal variations in ground
                water and surface water, provided the chief determines that the
                alternative data are sufficient to identify seasonal variations needed
                for the hydrologic assessments required by Chapter 1513 of the Revised
                Code and the rules adopted thereunder. Paragraphs (J) and (K) are
                proposed to address the mapping provisions of this rule and are
                proposed to be moved to rule 150I:13-4-08, which will apply to coal
                mining operations including underground mining surface operations. The
                mapping requirements for underground workings will be in rule 1501:13-
                4-08.l. Paragraphs (L) and (M) are proposed to be re-numbered (J) and
                (K) due to the revisions in paragraphs (J) and (K), as explained above.
                Paragraphs (L)(3), and (L)(4)(a) and (b) are proposed to have
                references changed due to the revisions in paragraphs (J) and (K), as
                explained above.
                 11. Section 1501:13-4-14 Underground mining permit application
                requirements for reclamation and operations plans--Paragraph (A)(2)(b)
                is proposed to restore ``necessary'' to this provision. It was removed
                effective April 30, 2009, but OSMRE requires that it be put back for
                the provision to be as effective as the Federal provision. Paragraph
                (H)(7) is proposed as a new paragraph to address incorporation by
                reference requirements. The paragraph refers the reader to rule
                1501:13-9-04, which contains information on where a copy of Soil
                Conservation Service Technical Release No. 60 can be obtained.
                 12. Section 1501:13-5-01 Review, public participation, and approval
                or disapproval of permit applications and permit terms and conditions--
                Paragraph (E)(6) is proposed to add additional language per HB 163
                (effective September 30,2011) so that this rule agrees with the
                language of rule 1501:13-4-03 (D)(2). (G)(3). Added a reference to
                proposed new mapping rule 1501:13-4-08.1
                 13. Section 1501:13-7-07 Liability insurance--Paragraph (A) is
                proposed to specify that, for an application to satisfy the liability
                insurance requirement of this rule, the application can contain a
                notarized certification acknowledging that a current proof of liability
                insurance and rider is part of the applicant's Central File for
                Identity Information. Having the liability insurance information in the
                Central File for Identity Information will avoid duplication of
                paperwork; the Central File contains up-to-date application information
                about a coal operator in one place in the Division, rather than
                requiring the coal operator to submit such information repeatedly in
                each individual application.
                 14. Section 1501:13-9-01 Signs and markers--Paragraph (C)(l) is
                proposed to remove ``but shall not be limited to''. Paragraph (C)(2) is
                proposed to be reworded for clarity. Paragraphs (C)(3) to (5) is
                proposed to correct conjunctions and punctuation. Paragraph (E) is
                proposed to clarify buffer zone marking requirements and a reference to
                the stream buffer zone provisions of rule 150I:13-9-04 added
                 15. Section 1501:13-9-07 Disposal of excess spoil--Proposed to add
                paragraph (K). Reference to 1501:13-4-14 (O) added because (O) also
                contains requirements for the disposal of excess spoil. Paragraph
                (M)(1) is proposed to correct a reference. Paragraph (N)(1) is proposed
                to add a reference to paragraph (B). Through a rule amendment in 1988,
                a reference to (B) was removed, although it's not clear why. 30 CFR
                816.74 (c) and 30 CFR 817.74 (c) require that the design be certified
                by a registered professional engineer. (The definition of engineer in
                rule 1501:13-1-02 already specifies that engineer means a professional
                engineer registered in accordance with ORC Chapter 4733.) (N)(5)(d).
                Reference to rule 1501:13-9-14 added because 1501:13-9-14 also contains
                requirements for postmining graded slopes.
                 16. Section 1501:13-9-08 Protection of underground--Proposed
                amendment to clarify that paragraph (A) is for surface mining
                operations, while new paragraphs (B) and (C) are for underground mining
                operations and coal exploration drilling, respectively. The distance
                limit requirements for surface mining operations are not being revised.
                Paragraph (A)(1) is proposed to be revised to comply with LSC's rule-
                drafting protocol. Paragraphs (B) and (B)(1) and (2) are proposed new
                provisions to protect underground mining operations from other
                underground mining operations. The
                [[Page 26417]]
                requirements are similar to those of (A), which protect underground
                mining operations from surface mining operations, except that the
                distance limit in (B) is 200 feet instead of 500 feet. The distance
                limit of 200 feet already exists in Mine Safety law, ORC section
                1563.39, as well as in federal MSHA regulations, 30 CFR 75.388(a)(2),
                for underground mining operations near other underground mines.
                Paragraph (C) is a proposed new provision to protect underground mining
                operations from coal exploration drilling. The requirements mirror
                those of (B), and are proposed to establish a clear distance limit for
                coal exploration drilling near underground mines in the interest of
                mine safety.
                 17. Section 1501:13-9-11 Protection of fish, wildlife, and related
                environmental values--Paragraph (C)(1) is proposed tp be revised to
                mirror the requirements of, and to make the rule as effective as, 30
                CFR 816.97(f) and 30 CFR 817.97(f) with regard to the protection of
                wetlands and riparian vegetation. Paragraph (C)(2) is proposed to make
                a small change in the word order of the requirements of this paragraph
                to match (C)(1) and 30 CFR 816.97(f) and 30 CFR 817.97(f). Also, the
                word ``disturbance'' changed to ``disturbances'' to be consistent with
                (C)(1) and 30 CFR 816.97(f) and 30 CFR 817.97(f).
                 18. Section 1501:13-9-15 Revegetation--Paragraph (F)(1), (F)(4)(c)
                and (F)(4)(c)(ii) is proposed to make small changes to correct
                grammatical errors and to conform to rule-writing standards. Paragraphs
                (F)(3) and (O)(5)(b) are proposed to correct paragraph references.
                Paragraph (F)(6) is proposed to add language to clarify that the Chief
                has the authority to not require the permittee to wait an additional 12
                months after seeding for minor repairs before applying for a phase III
                release, provided the Chief determines the extent of the area of repair
                was limited in size and the permittee remains in compliance with
                paragraph (G)(3)(b). Paragraphs (I)(1), (5) and (6) are proposed to
                update information about target yields and how the public can access
                this information.
                 19. Section 1501:13-9-17 Postmining use of land--Paragraph (B) is
                proposed to make grammatical changes to mirror 30 CFR 816.133 (b) and
                to match the singular noun use of (B)(1) and (2). A comma is proposed
                to be added to paragraph (B)(1). Paragraphs (D)(2) and (D)(7) are
                proposed to be added from 30 CFR 816.133 (c)(3)(i) and (iv). Two
                criteria that must be met to have an alternative postmining land use
                approved are: The use will not be impractical or unreasonable, and the
                use will not cause or contribute to violation of Federal State, or
                local law. Paragraph (D)(8) is proposed to correct a rule reference.
                 20. Section 1501:13-11-02 Support facilities and utility
                installations--Proposed to make changes to paragraph (A). Rule
                referencing changes to 1501:13-4-08 and 1501:13-4-08.1 due to the
                mapping requirements of rules 1501:13-4-04 and 1501:13-4-13 are
                proposed to be moved to those rules. Paragraph (C) is proposed to be
                amended to require that coal mining operations minimize damage,
                destruction, or disruption of services provided by oil, gas, and water
                wells, and by water and sewage lines, to mirror the requirements of 30
                CFR 816.180. Paragraph also amended to include telephone ``and other
                telecommunication lines.''
                 The full text of the program amendment is available for you to read
                at the locations listed above under ADDRESSES or at
                www.regulations.gov.
                III. Public Comment Procedures
                 Under the provisions of 30 CFR 732.17(h), we are seeking your
                comments on whether the amendment satisfies the applicable program
                approval criteria of 30 CFR 732.15. If we approve the amendment, it
                will become part of the State program.
                Electric or Written Comments
                 If you submit written or electronic comments on the proposed rule
                during the 30-day comment period, they should be specific, confined to
                issues pertinent to the proposed regulations, and explain the reason
                for any recommended change(s). We appreciate any and all comments, but
                those most useful and likely to influence decisions on the final
                regulations will be those that either involve personal experience or
                include citations to and analyses of SMCRA, its legislative history,
                its implementing regulations, case law, other pertinent State or
                Federal laws or regulations, technical literature, or other relevant
                publications.
                 We cannot ensure that comments received after the close of the
                comment period (see DATES) or sent to an address other than those
                listed (see ADDRESSES) will be included in the docket for this
                rulemaking and considered.
                Public Availability of Comments
                 Before including your address, phone number, email address, or
                other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be
                aware that your entire comment including your personal identifying
                information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can
                ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying
                information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be
                able to do so.
                Public Hearing
                 If you wish to speak at the public hearing, contact the person
                listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT by 4:00 p.m., e.s.t. on
                May 19, 2020. If you are disabled and need reasonable accommodations to
                attend a public hearing, contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER
                INFORMATION CONTACT. We will arrange the location and time of the
                hearing with those persons requesting the hearing. If no one requests
                an opportunity to speak, we will not hold a hearing.
                 To assist the transcriber and ensure an accurate record, we
                request, if possible, that each person who speaks at the public hearing
                provide us with a written copy of his or her comments. The public
                hearing will continue on the specified date until everyone scheduled to
                speak has been given an opportunity to be heard. If you are in the
                audience and have not been scheduled to speak and wish to do so, you
                will be allowed to speak after those who have been scheduled. We will
                end the hearing after everyone scheduled to speak, and others present
                in the audience who wish to speak, have been heard.
                Public Meeting
                 If only one person requests an opportunity to speak, we may hold a
                public meeting rather than a public hearing. If you wish to meet with
                us to discuss the amendment, please request a meeting by contacting the
                person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All such meetings
                are open to the public and, if possible, we will post notices of
                meetings at the locations listed under ADDRESSES. We will make a
                written summary of each meeting a part of the administrative record.
                IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews
                Executive Order 12866--Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive
                Order 13563--Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review
                 Executive Order 12866 provides that the Office of Information and
                Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will
                review all significant rules. Pursuant to OMB guidance, dated October
                12, 1993, the approval of State program amendments is exempted from OMB
                review under Executive Order 12866. Executive Order 13563, which
                [[Page 26418]]
                reaffirms and supplements Executive Order 12866, retains this
                exemption.
                Other Laws and Executive Orders Affecting Rulemaking
                 When a State submits a program amendment to OSMRE for review, our
                regulations at 30 CFR 732.17(h) require us to publish a notice in the
                Federal Register indicating receipt of the proposed amendment, its text
                or a summary of its terms, and an opportunity for public comment. We
                conclude our review of the proposed amendment after the close of the
                public comment period and determine whether the amendment should be
                approved, approved in part, or not approved. At that time, we will also
                make the determinations and certifications required by the various laws
                and executive orders governing the rulemaking process and include them
                in the final rule.
                List of Subjects in 30 CFR part 935
                 Intergovernmental relations, Surface mining, Underground mining.
                Thomas D. Shope,
                Regional Director, North Atlantic--Appalachian Region.
                [FR Doc. 2020-08805 Filed 5-1-20; 8:45 am]
                BILLING CODE 4310-05-P