DOT Pipeline Compliance News

September 2014 Issue

In This Issue

New Mexico Public Hearing on Proposed Damage Prevention Rule Changes

New Mexico is the latest state to propose changes to its damage prevention rules and regulations. The proposed rulemaking is scheduled for a public hearing on September 24, 2014 at the offices of the Commission located in the 4th Floor Hearing Room of the old PERA Building, at 1120 Paseo de Peralta, in Santa Fe. Major proposed changes to the New Mexico Damage Prevention regulations include the development of a positive response registry system and the requiring utility members to submit positive responses. For more information on the proposed rule changes and the New Mexico rule making process visit

Maine Public Utilities Commission Hearing on Damage Prevention

[Docket No. 2014-00248]

The Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) will hold a public hearing on September 24, 2014, 10:00 a.m. at the Public Utilities Commission, 101 Second Street, Hallowell, Maine, to consider proposed amendments to the Commission’s Underground Facilities Damage Prevention Requirements rule (Ch. 895) pursuant to recently enacted legislation, PL 2013, ch. 557.

Comments will be received until October 6, 2014. However, the Commission requests that comments be filed by September 19, 2014 to allow for follow-up inquiries during the hearing. Supplemental comments may be filed after the hearing. Written comments should refer to the docket number of this proceeding, Docket No. 2014-00248, and be filed through the Commission’s case management system. The PUC’s website is

The contact person for this filing is Derek Davidson, Public Utilities Commission, 18 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333. Telephone: (207) 287-1596. E-mail: The PUC rule-making liaison is

Coast Guard Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Increasing OPA Liability Limits

[Docket No. USCG-2013-1006]

The Coast Guard published a notice of proposed rulemaking that would increase the limits of liability for vessels, deepwater ports, and onshore facilities, under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, as amended (OPA 90), to reflect significant increases in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). For onshore facilities, the Coast Guard proposes to increase the OPA 90 liability limit from $350 million to $404.6 million.

This notice of proposed rulemaking is proposing a simplified regulatory procedure for the Coast Guard to make future required periodic CPI increases to the OPA 90 limits of liability for vessels, deepwater ports, and onshore facilities. These regulatory inflation increases to the limits of liability are required by OPA 90, and are necessary to preserve the deterrent effect and “polluter pays” principle embodied in OPA 90.

In addition, there is proposed language to clarify applicability of the OPA 90 vessel limits of liability to two categories of tank vessels, edible oil cargo tank vessels and tank vessels designated as oil spill response vessels.

Comments identified by Docket No. USCG-2013-1006 can be submitted via the E-Gov Website on or before October 20, 2014.

For a copy of this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, contact Jessica Foley.

PHMSA Revision to Gas Distribution Annual Report

Docket No. PHMSA-2013-0004]

On April 28, 2014, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) published a notice in the Federal Register (79 FR 23403) of its intent to revise the gas distribution annual report (PHMSA F7100.1-1) to improve the granularity of the data collected. (See RCP related article in the May edition of the DOT Pipeline Compliance News.)

In addition to making several minor changes to the report, PHMSA will also request a new Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number for this information collection. PHMSA received comments from one commenter in response to that notice. PHMSA is publishing this notice to respond to the comments, provide the public with an additional 30 days to comment on the proposed revisions to the forms and the instructions and announce that the revised information collection will be submitted to the OMB for approval.

PHMSA invites comments on the proposed revisions to the form and instructions. Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before September 15, 2014. Comments may be submitted via the E-Gov Website. Identify the docket number, PHMSA-2013-0004, at the beginning of your comments.