Nuclear Regulatory Commission: Revision of Fee Schedules; Fee Recovery for FY 2008, GAO-08-910R, June 23, 2008
Pursuant to section
801(a)(2)(A) of title 5, United States Code, this is our report on a major rule
promulgated by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), entitled “Revision of
Fee Schedules; Fee Recovery for FY 2008” (RIN: 3150-AI28). We received the rule on
The final rule amends the licensing, inspection, and annual fees that NRC charges its applicants and licensees. The final rule is necessary to implement the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990, as amended, which requires that NRC recover approximately 90 percent of its budget authority in each fiscal year, less the amounts appropriated from the Nuclear Waste Fund and for the Waste Incidental to Reprocessing activities and generic homeland security activities. The amount to be recovered for fiscal year 2008 is approximately $779.1 million. After accounting for carryover and billing adjustments, the net amount to be recovered is approximately $760.7 million.
Enclosed is our assessment of the NRC’s compliance with the procedural steps required by section 801(a)(1)(B)(i) through (iv) of title 5 with respect to the rule. Our review indicates that NRC complied with the applicable requirements.
If you have any questions about this report or wish to contact GAO officials responsible for the evaluation work relating to the subject matter of the rule, please contact Michael R. Volpe, Assistant General Counsel, at (202) 512-8236.
Robert J. Cramer
Associate General Counsel
(i) Cost-benefit analysis
NRC was not required to and did not prepare a separate cost-benefit analysis for this rule. In setting the fees, NRC is required under 42 U.S.C. sect. 2214 to set fees so that the costs to users bear a reasonable relationship to the cost of services provided by NRC, which is the benefit provided to users.
(ii) Agency actions relevant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. sections 603-605, 607, and 609
NRC performed a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis as required by the Act, which is contained in Appendix A of the final rule. NRC determined that the annual fees significantly impact a substantial number of small entities. In order to reduce the impact of the fee on small entities, while still meeting the requirement to recover 90 percent of its budget, NRC has instituted a maximum fee of $2,300 for small entities and a lower-tier small entity annual fee of $500.
(iii) Agency actions relevant to sections 202-205 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995, 2 U.S.C. sections 1532-1535
Because NRC is an independent regulatory agency under 42 U.S.C. sect. 3502(5), it is not subject to the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995.
(iv) Other relevant information or requirements under acts and executive orders
Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. sections 551 et seq.
NRC published a proposed fee rule for FY 2008 on
Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. sections 3501-3520
The final rule does not contain any information collection requirements and therefore is not subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act.
Statutory authorization for the rule
NRC is required by 42 U.S.C. sect. 2214 to recover approximately 90 percent of its budget authority, less amounts appropriated for certain activities, through fees to NRC licensees and applicants and to establish such fees by rule.
Executive Order No. 12,866
Because NRC is an independent regulatory agency under 42 U.S.C. sect. 3502(5), it is not covered by Executive Order No. 12,866.
Executive Order No. 13,132 (Federalism)
Because NRC is an independent regulatory agency under 42 U.S.C. sect. 3502(5), it is not covered by Executive Order No. 13,132.