[Federal Register: October 7, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 194)]
[Rules and Regulations]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
49 CFR Part 303
[Docket No. FMCSA-2002-13248]
Title VI Regulations for Federal Motor Carrier Safety
Administration Financial Assistance Recipients
AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.
ACTION: Final rule.
SUMMARY: FMCSA adopts as final its interim regulations at 49 CFR part
303 governing civil rights matters, consistent with the savings
provision of section 106(b) of the Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act
of 1999. As with the interim rule, this final rule clarifies and
modifies the applicability of certain Federal Highway Administration
(FHWA) and Departmental umbrella Title VI provisions of the Civil
Rights Act of 1964, and related nondiscrimination statutes, as they
apply to FMCSA Federal financial assistance recipients. Part 303 was
created to provide FMCSA with initial guidelines and procedures, as
well as future FMCSA Title VI implementing regulations and any future
guidelines on Title VI compliance. FMCSA removed itself from the FHWA
Title VI regulations in 23 CFR part 200 to avoid confusion, while not
altering the substantive Title VI obligations of FMCSA and its
grantees. FMCSA remains subject to the Departmental umbrella Title VI
regulations in 49 CFR part 21 and will develop as needed further
guidelines and procedures to assure effective and consistent
implementation for financially assisted recipients. We have not made
any changes to the interim rules in part 303, and we adopt the interim
regulations as final without change.
DATES: This Final Rule is effective on November 7, 2005.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Carmen Sevier, Office of Civil
Rights (MC-CR), DOT Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 400
Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-4330, or
e-mail Carmen.Sevier@fmcsa.dot.gov. Office hours are from 7:45 a.m. to
4:15 p.m. e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
Where Can You Get Copies of This Final Rule?
You may download this document from http://www.archives.gov/_federal
register by clicking on today's Federal Register; from the
Department of Transportation's electronic docket at the URL address:
http://dms.dot.gov, identified by docket FMCSA-2002-13248 and key in
the last five digits of this docket number; or you can contact the
person listed under For Further Information Contact to request a copy.
The Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999 (MCSIA) (Pub. L.
No. 105-159, 113 Stat. 1748, December 9, 1999), created the Federal
Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and transferred to FMCSA
certain motor carrier safety and related responsibilities. Prior to
MCSIA, the powers and authorities transferred to the FMCSA had been
exercised by various entities within the Department. FMCSA consequently
was charged with [[Page 58617]] enforcing motor carrier safety requirements previously enforced by its
predecessors: the former Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Office
of Motor Carriers; the former FHWA Office of Motor Carrier and Highway
Safety; and the former Office of Motor Carrier Safety within the DOT.
Section 106(b) of MCSIA contained a "savings provision" which,
among other things, preserved for FMCSA the applicability of various
rules and regulations that were applicable to its predecessor agencies
and offices. Among those regulations are certain FHWA nondiscrimination
protections and provisions that implement Title VI of the 1964 Civil
Rights Act (42 U.S.C. 2000d, et seq., and related nondiscrimination
statutes). The FHWA's regulations in 23 CFR part 200 are applicable to
recipients of Federal grant and cooperative agreement aid. Those
regulations, promulgated by FHWA in 1975 and 1976, supplemented the
Departmental umbrella Title VI protections in 49 CFR part 21.
Interim Final Rule (IFR)
FMCSA published an IFR in the Federal Register on February 14, 2005
(70 FR 7411) which established Part 303 for FMCSA Title VI implementing
regulations by adopting the Departmental Title VI provisions under 49
CFR part 21. The interim regulations in Part 303 were intended to
provide initial guidelines and procedures for future FMCSA Title VI
implementing regulations and any future guidelines on Title VI
compliance. FMCSA clarified the Title VI authorities covering FMCSA
programs by deleting references specific to only FHWA programs and by
stating the applicability of the Department-wide Title VI regulations
to FMCSA. We invited public comment on the IFR and the 60-day comment
period closed April 15, 2005. We did not receive any comments on the
Title VI states that, "No person in the United States shall, on
the grounds of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from
participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected
to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal
financial assistance." In addition, Title VI and the other related
nondiscrimination statutes \1\ bar intentional discrimination, as well
as disparate impact discrimination, which is a neutral policy or
practice that has an unequal and adverse impact on protected groups.
\1\ NONDISCRIMINATION PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS
1. Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964--"No person in the
United States shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national
origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits
of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity
receiving Federal financial assistance."
2. Age Discrimination Act of 1975--"No person in the United
States shall, on the basis of age be excluded from participation in,
be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under
any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."
3. Section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973--"No qualified
handicapped person shall, solely by reason of his handicap, be
excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be
subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that
receives or benefits from Federal financial assistance."
4. Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 prohibits
discrimination on the basis of sex, in education and training
programs provided by recipients of Federal financial assistance.
Title IX is designed to eliminate (with certain exceptions)
discrimination on the basis of sex in any education program or
activity receiving Federal financial assistance, whether or not such
program or activity is offered or sponsored by an educational
Applicability of FHWA Title VI Provisions to FMCSA
The FHWA's regulations in 23 CFR part 200 provide guidance on how
FHWA will implement its Title VI compliance and define the role and
responsibilities of State transportation agencies in ensuring
compliance with Title VI. FMCSA reviewed those regulations in light of
its motor carrier safety objectives and concluded the FHWA regulations
in 23 CFR part 200 do not meet the needs of FMCSA Federal financial
assistance recipients. This is because FHWA non-discrimination policies
and procedures are geared toward highway planning and development.
Alternatively, the Departmental implementing regulations in 49 CFR
part 21 specify the manner and degree to which grant recipients must
comply, and the basic recordkeeping requirements necessary to meet the
intent of the nondiscrimination statutes. The Departmental regulations
are broader in scope and therefore do not involve the degree of
specificity required by the FHWA regulations. On that basis, FMCSA
concluded the broader Departmental regulations are more appropriate for
the level of financial assistance involved in FMCSA programs or
activities. For these reasons, FMCSA adopted the Departmental umbrella
Programs or Activities
Under this final rule, FMCSA Federal financial assistance
recipients must comply with the Title VI regulations in 49 CFR part 21
for FMCSA-only programs or activities. As noted above, we believe the
less cumbersome but equally effective Departmental provisions better
accommodate the interests of State agencies and other grantees by
providing them with more streamlined Title VI procedures than those
established in 23 CFR part 200. FMCSA established Part 303 in
Subchapter A, Chapter III of Title 49 of the CFR, for its Title VI
implementing regulations, by adopting the Departmental Title VI
provisions under 49 CFR part 21. FMCSA remains subject to those
requirements, and may develop further guidelines and procedures in
accordance with the law to assure effective implementation by grantees.
For Joint or Multi-agency programs or activities, FMCSA grant
recipients must follow the requirements of 49 CFR part 21 unless an
agreement is reached by the Federal funding agencies for the recipients
to use those Title VI procedures of the Federal lead agency.\2\
\2\ The Federal lead agency is the agency that provides the most
overall funding to the recipient.
FMCSA carefully weighed the benefits to be gained by clarifying and
modifying Title VI regulations applicable to the agency. By taking
itself out from under FHWA Title VI regulations, FMCSA expects this
rule to increase grant and cooperative agreement participation levels
for FMCSA programs or activities by simplifying reporting requirements.
Since the FHWA Federal-aid programs or activities tend to be much more
costly than the FMCSA financially assisted programs or activities,
FMCSA expects this rule to lower administrative costs for grantees in
carrying out their Title VI responsibilities. FMCSA intends to continue
applying and using the adequate Title VI protections under the
Departmental umbrella regulations at 49 CFR part 21.
Rulemaking Analyses and Notices
Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review) and DOT
Regulatory Policies and Procedures
This Final Rule is not a significant regulatory action within the
meaning of Executive Order 12866, or significant within the meaning of
the Department of Transportation's regulatory policies and procedures.
This rule clarified and modified the applicability of certain Title VI
provisions of the FHWA and of the Department as they concern FMCSA's
Federal financial assistance recipients under the motor carrier safety
program. It also established Part 303 (49 [[Page 58618]]
CFR part 303) to provide FMCSA with Title VI implementing regulations,
as well as any further procedures for ensuring compliance with Title
VI. This was done by adopting the Department's longstanding Title VI
regulations at 49 CFR part 21. Therefore, FMCSA expects this rule to
impose no costs on industry or States, since all FMCSA Federal
financial assistance recipients are currently complying with the
requirements of Title VI. We requested comments on any potential costs
or burdens associated with the IFR, but none were received.
Regulatory Flexibility Act
FMCSA evaluated the effects of this action on small entities in
accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), as
amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. In
taking itself out from under FHWA's Title VI reporting and procedural
requirements, because they are not appropriate for the level of
financial assistance in FMCSA's programs, FMCSA expects to ease the
compliance standards for Title VI by all FMCSA Federal-aid recipients.
We certify that this action will not have a significant economic impact
on a substantial number of small entities, and may have some positive
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995
Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-
4; 2 U.S.C. 1532, et seq.) requires each Federal agency to assess the
costs, benefits, and other effects of its regulatory actions on State,
local, or tribal governments, or on the private sector, except to the
extent the regulations incorporate requirements specifically set forth
in law. FMCSA determined that this rule does not include a Federal
mandate likely to result in expenditures by State, local, or tribal
governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $120.7
million or more in any one year (adjusted for inflation). Furthermore,
regulations implementing civil rights requirements are explicitly
excluded from unfunded mandates consideration. Therefore, the
requirements of Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act do not
apply to this final rule.
Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)
FMCSA analyzed this final rule under the principles and criteria of
Executive Order 13132. We certify that this rule will not have a
substantial direct effect on the States, or sufficient federalism
implications for the States, nor will it limit the policymaking
discretion of the States. This is because nothing in this final rule
directly preempts any State law or regulation.
Executive Order 13175 (Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal
FMCSA analyzed this final rule under the principles and criteria of
Executive Order 13175. This rule will not significantly or uniquely
affect the communities of Indian tribal governments and will not impose
substantial direct compliance costs. Therefore, Executive Order 13175
does not apply to this final rule.
Executive Order 13211 (Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use)
FMCSA analyzed this final rule under Executive Order 13211, Actions
Concerning Regulations that Significantly Affect Energy Supply,
Distribution, or Use, dated May 18, 2001. The rule is procedural in
nature and, therefore, is not a significant regulatory action under the
provisions of Executive Order 12866, and is not likely to have
significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of
Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995
We determined that this rule does not include an information
collection requirement for which we need approval from the Office of
Management and Budget, under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44
U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).
Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)
This action meets the applicable standards in sections 3(a) and
3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize
litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.
Executive Order 13045 (Protection of Children)
We analyzed the rule under Executive Order 13045, Protection of
Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks.
Consequently, this rule is not economically significant and does not
concern an environmental risk to the health or safety of children.
Executive Order 12630 (Taking of Private Property)
This action does not effect a taking of private property or
otherwise have taking implications under Executive Order 12630,
Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected
Executive Order 12372 (Intergovernmental Review)
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Number 20.217 Motor
Carrier Safety. The regulations implementing Executive Order 12372
regarding intergovernmental consultation on Federal programs and
activities apply to this program.
Executive Order 13166 (Limited English Proficiency)
Executive Order 13166, "Improving Access to Services for Persons
with Limited English Proficiency" (LEP) applies to Federally assisted
programs. It requires each Federal agency to examine the services it
provides and develop reasonable measures to ensure that persons seeking
government services but limited in their English proficiency can
meaningfully access these services consistent with, and without unduly
burdening, the fundamental mission of the agency.
Its purpose is to clarify for Federal-fund recipients the
reasonable steps those grant recipients should take to ensure that its
programs or activities are meaningfully accessible to individuals who
are limited in English proficiency. Moreover, the Executive Order on
LEP requires each Federal agency to provide guidance on Federal
financial assistance to ensure that the recipients' programs or
activities are meaningfully accessible.
As FMCSA develops its Title VI program, we will explore whether
additional outreach to LEP individuals is appropriate. FMCSA will be
operating under DOT LEP guidance. Therefore, this final rule complies
with the principles enunciated in the Executive Order.
National Environmental Policy Act
FMCSA Environmental Order 5610.1C dated March 1, 2004 (69 FR 9680)
defines FMCSA actions that may be categorically excluded from
preparation of a National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) environmental
impact statement. This final rule merely clarified and modified FMCSA's
Title VI program, the applicability of both the FHWA's and the
Department's Title VI provisions, and established a new part in 49 CFR
chapter III, Subchapter A, for civil rights matters. Therefore, this
final rule is categorically excluded in accordance with FMCSA Order
5610.1C, paragraph 6.a.
List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 303
Civil Rights, Implementation and review procedures, Title VI
compliance program, Title VI program and related statutes,
Accordingly, the interim regulations published February 14, 2005 at
70 FR 7411, Part 303 of Subchapter A, Chapter III of Title 49 of the
Code of Federal Regulations, are adopted without further revision.
Issued on: October 3, 2005.
Annette M. Sandberg,
[FR Doc. 05-20261 Filed 10-6-05; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P