If you’ve been worrying about whether the “information collection” aspects of the FCC’s revised Emergency Alert System (EAS) rules would be in effect soon enough to give everybody time to meet the upcoming June 30, 2012 deadline for CAP compliance, you can breathe easy. According to a notice in the Federal Register, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved those aspects for six months, effective June 7, 2012. So everything should be good to go for CAP compliance purposes.
While OMB approval normally lasts three years, the Commission had sought “emergency” OMB review, meaning that the FCC had cut some procedural corners in the usual Paperwork Reduction Act clearance process. The abbreviated six-month approval from OMB will give the Commission the opportunity to fill in the gaps.
Interestingly, OMB appears to have approved, as “information collections”, Sections 11.41(b), 11.42 and 11.54(b)(13). That’s interesting because all three sections have been deleted from the rules, so it’s hard to see how they might be deemed “information collections” that might require OMB approval. To be sure, Section 11.54(b)(13) has been re-codified as Section 11.54(a)(3), so the underlying requirements of that particular subsection are still in the books . . . but Section 11.54(a)(3) itself isn’t expressly included in OMB’s list of “information collections” covered by its approval. That’s probably not a fatal flaw, though, since OMB’s list does include a blanket reference to all of 47 C.F.R. Part 11, which comprises the entirety of the revised EAS rules.