New regs for Tuesday: Lamps, television commercials, animal disease

Tuesday's edition of the Federal Register contains new rules for lamps, political television commercials, animal disease, and the scales used to weigh livestock and poultry.

Here's what is happening:

Lamps: The Department of Energy is considering new energy conservation standards for general service fluorescent lamps and incandescent reflector lamps.

The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy proposed more stringent rules on Monday, which it estimates would cost manufacturers more than $90 million and could lead some to close up shop and cut jobs.

But the new rules would also save the public billions in energy costs and have significant environmental benefits, the agency estimates.

The Energy Department will hold a public hearing on Thursday to discuss the proposed rules. The public has 60 days to comment.

Political advertisements: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is moving forward with a rule that requires all television broadcasters to post information online about the political television advertisements they sell.

The major broadcasters, including ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox, have been required to provide the information since 2012, but smaller broadcasters will face the same requirements starting in July.

The rules require television broadcasters to post their political files online at a FCC-hosted database, rather than locally at their studios, so that the public can access the information.

"Given that these television stations have already been required to use the online public file for documents other than the political file since Aug. 2, 2012, we do not expect them to have difficulty determining how to upload new political file documents to the online file," the agency wrote.

Disease: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is moving forward with a rule intended to prevent the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in deer, elk and moose around the country.

The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service announced Monday that it is finalizing an interim rule intended to contain the disease. The rules would set minimum requirements for interstate movement of these farmed or captive animals, but does not prevent states and local authorities from setting even more restrictive regulations to protect herd animals in their areas from contracting this disease.

CWD causes herd animals to lose a massive amount of weight, and eventually leads to death.

The interim rule has been in effect since June 2012. 

"Species currently known to be susceptible to CWD via natural routes of transmission include Rocky Mountain elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, black-tailed deer, sika deer, and moose," the agency wrote.

Scales: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is moving forward with new requirements for the scales used to weigh livestock and poultry before they are sold.

The USDA's Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) announced the new rules Monday, which applies to stockyard owners, market agencies, dealers, packers, and live poultry dealers. The rules require that the scales they use be installed, maintained, and operated in a way that ensures they are accurately measuring the weight of these animals.

"The purpose for these regulations is to ensure fairness and accuracy in the determination of prices the regulated entities pay for livestock and poultry," the agency wrote.

The rule goes into effect in 60 days.

Post Office: The Postal Regulatory Commission is correcting an error it made in a regulation it issued last year. The correction goes into effect immediately.