[Federal Register: August 29, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 168)]
[Notices]               
[Page 55382-55383]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr29au02-35]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

AGENCY: Department of Education.
SUMMARY: The Secretary of Education requests comments on the Free 
Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) that the Secretary proposes 
to use for the 2003-2004 year. The FAFSA is completed by students and 
their families and the information submitted on the form is used to 
determine the students' eligibility and financial need for financial 
aid under the student financial assistance programs authorized under 
Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, (Title IV, 
HEA Programs).

DATES: Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before 
September 30, 2002.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 483 of the Higher Education Act of 
1965, as amended (HEA), requires the Secretary, ``in cooperation with 
agencies and organizations involved in providing student financial 
assistance,'' to ``produce, distribute and process free of charge a 
common financial reporting form to be used to determine the need and 
eligibility of a student under'' the Title IV, HEA Programs. This form 
is the FAFSA. In addition, Section 483 authorizes the Secretary to 
include non-financial data items that assist States in awarding State 
student financial assistance.
    The Secretary requests comments on the draft 2003-2004 FAFSA that 
has

[[Page 55383]]

been posted to the IFAP website (see below). In particular, in an 
effort to continually improve the application for students, parents, 
and schools, the Secretary seeks comments to further simplify the FAFSA 
form and reduce burden hours, including removing, replacing or 
combining data elements. For example, replace questions 11 and 12, or 
questions 96 and 97 with a new question asking for the student's e-mail 
address.
    The Secretary is considering additional skip logic to incorporate 
the simplified needs test and automatic zero expected family 
contribution to the FAFSA on the Web product, and requests comments 
regarding adding this functionality. The Secretary is publishing this 
request for comment under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act 
of 1995, 44 U.S. C. 3501 et seq. Under that Act, ED must obtain the 
review and approval of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) before 
it may use a form to collect information. However, under procedure for 
obtaining approval from OMB, ED must first obtain additional public 
comment on the proposed form and, to obtain that comment, ED must 
publish this notice in the Federal Register. In addition to comments 
requested above, to accommodate the requirements of the Paperwork 
Reduction Act, the Secretary is interested in receiving comments with 
regard to the following matters: (1) Is this collection necessary to 
the proper functions of the Department, (2) will this information be 
processed and used in a timely manner, (3) is the estimate of burden 
accurate, (4) how might the Department enhance the quality, utility, 
and clarity of the information to be collected, and (5) how might the 
Department minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, 
including through the use of information technology.

    Dated: August 23, 2002.
John D. Tressler,
Leader, Regulatory Information Management, Office of the Chief 
Information Officer.

Office of Postsecondary Education

    Type of Review: Revision.
    Title: Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
    Frequency: Annually.
    Affected Public: Individuals and families.
    Annual Reporting and Recordkeeping Hour Burden:

    Responses: 13,726,803.
    Burden Hours: 7,680,346.

    Abstract: The FAFSA collects identifying and financial information 
about a student applying for Title IV, Higher Education Act (HEA) 
Program funds. This information is used to calculate the student's 
expected family contribution, which is used to determine a student's 
financial need. The information is also used to determine the student's 
eligibility for grants and loans under the Title IV, HEA Programs. It 
is further used for determining a student's eligibility for State and 
institutional financial aid programs.

ADDRESSES: Requests for copies of the submission for OMB review; 
comment request may be accessed from http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://edicsweb.ed.gov, by 
selecting the ``Browse Pending Collections'' link and by clicking on 
link number 1930. When you access the information collection, click on 
``Download Attachments'' to view. Written requests for information 
should be addressed to Vivian Reese, Department of Education, 400 
Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 4050, Regional Office Building 3, 
Washington, DC 20202-4651. Please specify the complete title of the 
information collection when making your request. In addition, 
interested persons can access this document on the Internet:
    (1) Go to IFAP at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://ifap.ed.gov.
    (2) Click on ``Current SFA Publications''.
    (3) Scroll down and click on ``FAFSAs and Renewal FAFSAs''.
    (4) Click on ``By 2003-2004 Award Year''.
    (5) Click on ``Draft FAFSA Form/Instructions''.
    Please note that the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software, version 
4.0 or greater, is necessary to view this file. This software can be 
downloaded for free from Adobe's website: http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://www.adobe.com.
    Comments regarding burden and/or the information collection 
activity requirements should be directed to Joseph Schubart at (202) 
708-9266 or via his internet address Joe--Schubart@ed.gov. Individuals 
who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the 
Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8 
a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern time, Monday through Friday.

[FR Doc. 02-22009 Filed 8-28-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P