(a) The regulations in this part implement Executive Order 12372, “Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs”, issued July 14, 1982, and amended on April 8, 1983. These regulations also implement applicable provisions of section 401 of the Intergovernmental Cooperation Act of 1968 and section 204 of the Demonstration Cities and Metropolitan Development Act of 1966.
(b) These regulations are intended to foster an intergovernmental partnership and a strengthened Federalism by relying on State processes and on State, areawide, regional and local coordination for review of proposed Federal financial assistance and direct Federal development.
(c) The regulations are intended to aid the internal management of the Department, and are not intended to create any right or benefit enforceable at law by a party against the Department or its officers.
As used in this part, the following definitions apply:
Department means the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Order means Executive Order 12372, issued July 14, 1982, and amended April 8, 1983, and titled Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.
Secretary means the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or an official or employee of the Department acting for the Secretary under a delegation of authority.
State means any of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The Secretary publishes in the Federal Register a list of the Department's programs and activities that are subject to these regulations and identifies which of these are subject to the requirements of section 204 of the Demonstration Cities and Metropolitan Development Act.
(a) The Secretary provides opportunities for consultation by elected officials of those State and local governments that would provide the non-Federal funds for, or that would be directly affected by, proposed Federal financial assistance from, or direct Federal development by, the Department.
(b) If a State adopts a process under the Order to review and coordinate proposed Federal financial assistance and direct Federal development, the Secretary, to the extent permitted by law:
(1) Uses the State process to determine official views of State and local elected officials;
(2) Communicates with State and local elected officials as early in a program planning cycle as is reasonably feasible to explain specific plans and actions;
(3) Makes efforts to accommodate State and local elected officials' concerns with proposed Federal financial assistance and direct Federal development that are communicated through the State process;
(4) Allows the States to simplify and consolidate existing Federally required State plan submissions;
(5) Where State planning and budgeting systems are sufficient and where permitted by law, encourages the substitution of State plans for Federally required State plans;
(6) Seeks the coordination of views of affected State and local elected officials in one State with those of another State when proposed Federal financial assistance or direct Federal development has an impact on interstate metropolitan urban centers or other interstate areas; and
(7) Supports State and local governments by discouraging the reauthorization or creation of any planning organization which is Federally-funded, which has a limited purpose, and which is not adequately representative of, or accountable to, State or local elected officials.
The Secretary, to the extent practicable, consults with and seeks advice from all other substantially affected Federal departments and agencies in an effort to assure full coordination between such agencies and the Department regarding programs and activities covered under these regulations.
(a) A State may select any program or activity published in the Federal Register in accordance with § 415.5 for intergovernmental review under these regulations. Each State, before selecting programs and activities, shall consult with local elected officials.
(b) Each State that adopts a process shall notify the secretary of the Department's programs and activities selected for that process.
(c) A State may notify the Secretary of changes in its selections at any time. For each change, the State shall submit to the Secretary an assurance that the State has consulted with elected local officials regarding the change. The Department may establish deadlines by which States are required to inform the Secretary of changes in their program selections.
(d) The Secretary uses a State's process as soon as feasible, depending on individual programs and activities, after the Secretary is notified of its selections.
(a) The Secretary provides notice to directly affected State, areawide, regional, and local entities in a State of proposed Federal financial assistance or direct Federal development if:
(1) The State has not adopted a process under the Order; or
(2) The assistance or development involves a program or an activity that is not covered under the State process.
(b) This notice may be made by publication in the Federal Register or other appropriate means, which the Department in its discretion deems appropriate.
(c) In order to facilitate communication with State and local officials the Secretary has established an office within the Department to receive all communications pertinent to this Order. All communications should be sent to the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, Room 143-W, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250, Attention: E.O. 12372.
(a) Except in unusual circumstances, the Secretary gives State processes or directly affected State, areawide, regional, and local officials and entities:
(1) At least 30 days from the date established by the Secretary to comment on proposed Federal financial assistance in the form of noncompeting continuation awards; and
(2) At least 60 days from the date established by the Secretary to comment on proposed direct Federal development or Federal financial assistance other than noncompeting continuation awards.
(b) This section also applies to comments in cases in which the review, coordination and communication with the Department have been delegated.
(c) Applicants for programs and activities subject to section 204 of the Demonstration Cities and Metropolitan Development Act shall allow areawide agencies a 60-day opportunity for review and comment.
(a) The Secretary follows the procedures in § 415.12 if:
(1) A State office or official is designated to act as a single point of contact between a State process and all Federal agencies; and
(2) That office or official transmits a State process recommendation for a program selected under § 415.8.
(1) The single point of contact is not obligated to transmit comments from State, areawide, regional or local officials and entities where there is no State process recommendation.
(2) If a State process recommendation is transmitted by a single point of contact, all comments from State, areawide, regional and local officials and entities that differ from it must also be transmitted.
(c) If a State has not established a process, or is unable to submit a State process recommendation, State, areawide, regional and local officials and entities may submit comments either to the applicant or to the Department.
(d) If a program or activity is not selected by a State process, State, areawide, regional and local officials and entities may submit comments either to the applicant or to the Department. In addition, if a State process recommendation for a non-selected program or activity is transmitted to the Department by the single point of contact, the Secretary follows the procedures of § 415.12.
(e) The Secretary considers comments which do not constitute a State process recommendation submitted under these regulations and for which the Secretary is not required to apply the procedures of § 415.12, when such comments are provided by a single point of contact by the applicant, or directly to the Department by a commenting party.
(a) If a State process provides a State process recommendation to the Department through its single point of contact, the Secretary either -
(1) Accepts the recommendations;
(2) Reaches a mutually agreeable solution with the State process; or
(3) Provides the single point of contact with a written explanation of the decision, as the Secretary in his or her discretion deems appropriate. The Secretary may also supplement the written explanation by also providing the explanation to the single point of contact by telephone, other telecommunication, or other means.
(b) In any explanation under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, the Secretary informs the single point of contact that:
(1) The Department will not implement its decision for at least ten days after the single point of contact receives the explanation; or
(2) The Secretary has reviewed the decision and determined that, because of unusual circumstances, the waiting period of at least ten days is not feasible.
(c) For purposes of computing the waiting period under paragraph (b)(1) of this section, a single point of contact is presumed to have received written notification five days after the date of mailing of such notification.
(a) The Secretary is responsible for:
(1) Identifying proposed Federal financial assistance and direct Federal development that have an impact on interstate areas;
(2) Notifying appropriate officials in States which have adopted a process and which selected the Department's program or activity;
(3) Making efforts to identify and notify the affected State, areawide, regional and local officials and entities in those States that have not adopted a process under the Order or do not select the Department's program or activity; and
(4) Responding, pursuant to § 415.12, if the Secretary receives a recommendation from a designated areawide agency transmitted by a single point of contact, in cases in which the review, coordination, and communication with the Department have been delegated.
(b) The Secretary uses the procedures in § 415.12 if a State process provides a State process recommendation to the Department through a single point of contact.
(a) As used in this section:
(1) Simplify means that a State may develop its own format, choose its own submission date, and select the planning period for a State plan.
(2) Consolidate means that a State may meet statutory and regulatory requirements by combining two or more plans into one document and that the State can select the format, submission date, and the planning period for the consolidated plan.
(3) Substitute means that a State may use a plan or other document that it has developed for its own purposes to meet Federal requirements.
(b) If not inconsistent with law, a State may decide to try to simplify, consolidate, or substitute Federally required State plans without prior approval by the Secretary.
(c) The Secretary reviews each State plan a State has simplified, consolidated or substituted and accepts the plan only if its contents meet Federal requirements.
In an emergency, the Secretary may waive any provision in Subpart C - Intergovernmental Review of Department of Agriculture Programs and Activities, 2 CFR 415.3 to 415.14.