7 CFR 614.7 - Preliminary technical determinations.
(a) A preliminary technical determination is limited to those determinations made pursuant to the HELC/WC provisions (16 U.S.C. 3801, et seq.) and becomes final 30 days after the participant receives the decision, unless the participant files an appeal with the appropriate NRCS official as indicated in the decision notice requesting:
(1) Reconsideration with a field visit, office visit, or other designated location meeting site in accordance with paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section; or
(2) Mediation as set forth in § 614.11.
(1) If the participant requests reconsideration with a field visit, office visit, or other location visit, the designated conservationist, participant, and at the option of the conservation district, a district representative will make a field or office visit for the purpose of gathering additional information and discussing the facts relating to the preliminary technical determination. The participant may also provide any additional documentation to the designated conservationist.
(2) Within 15 days of the field or office visit, the designated conservationist, based upon the agency record as supplemented by the field visit and any participant submissions, will reconsider his or her preliminary technical determination.
(3) If the reconsidered determination is no longer adverse to the participant, the designated conservationist will issue the reconsidered determination as a final technical determination.
(4) If the preliminary technical determination remains adverse, then the designated conservationist will forward the revised decision and agency record to the State Conservationist for a final determination pursuant to paragraph (c) of this section, unless further appeal is waived in writing by the participant in accordance with paragraph (d) of this section.
(c) The State Conservationist will issue a final technical determination to the participant as soon as is practicable after receiving the reconsideration and agency record from the designated conservationist. The technical determination issued by the State Conservationist becomes a final NRCS technical determination upon receipt by the participant. Receipt triggers the running of the 30-day timeframe to appeal to NAD, or if applicable, to the FSA county committee.
(d) In order to address application needs or resource issues on the ground immediately (expedited finality), a participant may waive, in writing to the State Conservationist, the reconsideration rights stated in paragraph (a) of this section so that a preliminary technical decision becomes final before the expiration of the 30-day appeal period.