Becoming an Agreement State

The Commission and a State may enter an Agreement whereby the Commission discontinues regulatory authority over a specific category of materials. The State concurrently assumes regulatory authority for those materials. NRC provides assistance to States expressing interest in establishing programs to assume NRC regulatory authority under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended. Section 274 of the Act provides a statutory basis under which NRC relinquishes to the States portions of its regulatory authority to license and regulate byproduct materials (radioisotopes); source materials (uranium and thorium); and certain quantities of special nuclear materials. The mechanism for the transfer of NRC's authority to a State is an agreement signed by the Governor of the State and the Chairman of the Commission, in accordance with section 274b of the Act.

An overview of the process to become an Agreement State includes the following:

  • Governor files Letter of Intent with Chairman
  • The Office of Nuclear Materials Safety and Safeguards (NMSS) assigns a Project Manager
  • State develops Draft Request
  • U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff reviews Draft Request for completeness
  • NRC provides letter to State detailing review team's comments
  • State develops Formal Request
  • A Complete Request includes supporting State legislation, regulations, and program description
  • Governor submits Formal Request and certifies State has adequate program
  • The NRC staff evaluates the State's Agreement materials program with regard to NMSS SA-700 Procedure; the assessment should show that the Agreement materials program satisfies the Commission policy statement Criteria for Guidance of States and NRC in Discontinuance of NRC Regulatory Authority and Assumption Thereof by States Through Agreement (46 FR 7540; January 23, 1981 and 48 FR 33376; July 21, 1983)
  • Commission approves publication in the Federal Register for public review and comment
  • NRC staff analyzes public comments
  • Commission approves Agreement
  • Chairman and Governor hold signing ceremony
  • State assumes regulation authority
  • Final Agreement published in Federal Register
  • Orderly transfer and assumption of authority
  • NRC staff and the State continue post-Agreement exchange-of-information and assessment of program performance

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, March 24, 2022