[Federal Register: June 16, 1998 (Volume 63, Number 115)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 32733]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

[[Page 32733]]



17 CFR Part 140

Amendment to Regulation Concerning Conduct of Members and
Employees and Former Members and Employees of the Commission; Receipt
and Disposition of Foreign Gifts and Decorations

AGENCY: Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

ACTION: Final amendment.


SUMMARY: The Commodity Futures Trading Commission ("Commission" or
"CFTC") is amending a provision of its regulations, 17 CFR 140.735-4
(1998), which sets forth the responsibilities of Commission members and
employees concerning the receipt and disposition of gifts and
decorations from foreign governments. The Commission adopted this
regulation in 1982 to comply with the Foreign Gifts and Decorations
Act, 5 U.S.C. 7342 (1994). The amendment clarifies the fact that gifts
of travel expenses in excess of minimal value must be reported to and
approved by the CFTC's Executive Director in accordance with the
procedures set forth in the Commission's regulation whereas the receipt
of travel benefits or expenses for services rendered need not be
reported. The Commission is publishing this amendment in final form
without soliciting comments pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3) because it
involves a rule of agency procedure and does not alter current
requirements. Therefore, notice and public procedure would be

EFFECTIVE DATE: June 16, 1998.

George Wilder, Office of General Counsel, Commodity Futures Trading
Commission, Three Lafayette Centre, 1155 21st Street, NW., Washington,
DC 20581, (202) 418-5120, or electronically at [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Commission amends its regulation
concerning the receipt and disposition of foreign gifts and decorations
to conform more clearly to the statutory provisions enacted by
Congress. This amendment clarifies that an employee, which includes the
spouse of a Commission member or employee, need not report his or her
acceptance of travel benefits or expenses provided in exchange for
services rendered. This situation is most likely to arise when the
spouse of a Commission member or employee provides services to a
foreign government or other organization described in Rule 140.735-4.
In such circumstances, the acceptance of travel expenses will not
trigger the reporting requirements of the Commission's regulation.
    The Commission finds that this rule amendment relates solely to
agency organization, procedure and practice. Therefore, the provisions
of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. 553, generally requiring
notice of proposed rulemaking and opportunity for public comment, are
not applicable. The Commission further finds that, because the
amendment does not alter current requirements and only affects
Commission members and employees who will be notified by internal
means, there is good cause to make this amendment effective upon
publication in the Federal Register.
    The Regulatory Flexibility Act ("RFA"), 5 U.S.C. 601-611 (1994
and Supp. II (1996)), requires that agencies, in proposing rules,
consider the impact of those rules on small businesses. Section 3(a) of
the RFA defines the term "rule" to mean "any rule for which the
agency publishes a general notice of proposed rulemaking pursuant to
section 553(b) of this title * * * for which the agency provides an
opportunity for notice and public comment." 5 U.S.C. Sec. 601(2).
Since the amendment to the Commission's regulation was not effected
pursuant to Section 553(b), it is not a "rule" as defined in the RFA,
and the analysis and certification process required by that statue does
not apply.

List of Subjects in 17 CFR Part 140

    Organization and functions (Government agencies).

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Commission amends Title 17,
Part 140 of the Code of Federal Regulations as follows:


Subpart C--Regulation Concerning Conduct of Members and Employees
and Former Members and Employees of the Commission

    1. The authority citation for Part 140 continues to read as

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 4a (f) and (j), 12a(5), and 13.

    2. Section 140.735-4 is amended by revising paragraphs (b)(3) and
(c)(5) introductory text to read as follows:

Sec. 140.735-4  Receipt and disposition of foreign gifts and

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
* * * * *
    (3) Accept gifts of travel or gifts of expenses for travel, such as
transportation, food and lodging, from foreign governments, other than
those authorized in paragraph (c)(5) of this section; or
* * * * *
    (c) * * *
* * * * *
    (5) Commission members and employees are authorized to accept from
a foreign government gifts of travel or gifts of expenses for travel
taking place entirely outside the United States, such as
transportation, food and lodging, of more than minimal value if the
acceptance is approved by the Executive Director, upon a finding that
it is consistent with the interests of the Commission. Either prior to
or within 30 days after accepting each gift of travel or gift of travel
expenses pursuant to this paragraph, the Commission member or employee
concerned shall file a statement with the Executive Director containing
the following information:
* * * * *
    Dated: June 5, 1998.

    Issued by the Commission.
Jean A. Webb,
Secretary of the Commission, Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
[FR Doc. 98-15720 Filed 6-15-98; 8:45 am]

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