May 26, 1999

Shirley Ann Jackson, Chairman
U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, D.C.  20555

Subject: Non-applicability of new rule, "Radiological Criteria
          for License Termination of Uranium Recovery Facilities"
          [69 FR 17506, April 12, 1999], to FUSRAP sites

Dear Chairman Jackson:

     The purpose of this letter is to briefly outline to the
Commission our position on the new rule "Radiological Criteria
for License Termination of Uranium Recovery Facilities" [69 FR
17506, April 12, 1999].  We commented on the text of the original
notice which requested comments on this rulemaking [62 FR 39093,
July 21, 1997, appended to publication of the LTR] on February 9,
1998 (copy enclosed); we were not made aware of or given the
opportunity to comment on SECY 98-084, April 15, 1998 (for
details, refer to April 2, 1999 telcon with Steven Crockett and

     Our position is that this rule can not be considered as an
applicable regulation or an appropriate and relevant requirement
for the cleanup of Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action
Program (FUSRAP) sites.  We say this because:

1) as a part of this rulemaking, a NEPA Finding of No Significant
Impact (FONSI) was issued.  This FONSI claims a limited scope for
the rule, specifically: a) the rule is stated to affect only four
mill facilities and seven ISLs, b) the affected sites are located
in the West (New Mexico, Wyoming, Utah) and in Nebraska, c) these
sites are typically located in high desert, areas with low
precipitation and low population density, where ranching and
mining are the predominant land uses (even so, staff admits a
wide range of possible doses at the various sites to be covered
by the rule, that some doses may exceed the 10 CFR Part 20
standard of 100 millirem per year);

2) in contrast, major impacts have been associated with
conditions at and cleanup of the FUSRAP sites (as an example, see
DOE's 1993 DEIS for the Tonawanda Site).  The FUSRAP includes at
least 46 sites with over 2.3 million cubic yards of contamination
(according to DOE documents); most of these sites are located in
the East (the largest is at St. Louis, comprising several
properties) in areas with both high population density and high
precipitation; these are areas where application of the new rule,
using plausible future use scenarios (residential, including, but
not limited to, resident farmer) is likely to result in
unrestricted use doses exceeding the 100 mrem per year standard.

     In summary, the FONSI for this new rule clearly does not
support its application to FUSRAP sites.  We do not expect the
Commission to disagree with this position.  If the Commission
does disagree, we request a timely reply outlining the
Commission's position.


                                   James Rauch

 NOTE : By reply letter dated June 11, 1999 from NRC's John Greeves addressed to James Rauch,
FACTS Newsletter,
NRC agreed that "the new [uranium recovery facilities] rule does not apply to the FUSRAP sites."