Thursday, February 24, 2022

NRC Proposes to Amend Licensing, Inspection, and Annual Fees for Fiscal Year 2022

Nuclear Regulatory Commission - News Release
No: 22-008 February 23, 2022
CONTACT: David McIntyre, 301-415-8200

NRC Proposes to Amend Licensing, Inspection, and Annual Fees for Fiscal Year 2022

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is seeking public comment on proposed changes to the licensing, inspection, special projects, and annual fees it would charge applicants and licensees for fiscal year 2022.

This year’s proposed fee rule, published today in the Federal Register, reflects a total budget authority of $887.7 million, an increase of $43.3 million from FY 2021. This is based on the FY 2022 Congressional Budget Justification, as a full-year appropriation has yet to be enacted. If the NRC receives an appropriation with a different budget authority, these amounts will be reflected in the final fee rule to be published this summer.

Under the Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act, the NRC is required to recover nearly all of its total budget authority in FY 2022, except for specific excluded activities. NEIMA also established a new cap for operating reactor annual fees and required three sets of actions related to invoices for service fees.

After accounting for the exclusions from the fee-recovery requirement and net billing adjustments, the NRC must recover approximately $752.2 million in fees in FY 2022. Of this amount, approximately $188.9 million will be recovered through Part 170 fees for service and $563.3 million through Part 171 annual fees.

Compared to FY 2021, proposed annual fees would decrease for fuel facilities and the agency’s lone uranium recovery licensee. Annual fees would increase for operating power reactors, spent fuel storage/reactor decommissioning activities, non-power production or utilization facilities, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act Program, DOE transportation activities, and for 44 materials users fee categories. Even with the proposed increase, the operating power reactors annual fee would not exceed the cap established by NEIMA.

The proposed fee rule includes several other changes affecting licensees and applicants. The NRC’s hourly rate for services would increase from $288 to $291, and license application fees would adjust accordingly. In addition, the proposed rule would implement a public interest exemption and not assess fees for import and export licensing activities in FY 2022.

The Federal Register notice includes detailed instructions on how to submit written comments on the proposed rule. Comments will be accepted through March 25.

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