§ 2.1210 Initial decision and its effect.
(a) Unless the Commission directs that the record be certified to it in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section, the presiding officer shall render an initial decision after completion of an informal hearing under this subpart. That initial decision constitutes the final action of the Commission on the contested matter 120 days after the date of issuance, unless:
(1) Any party files a petition for Commission review in accordance with § 2.1212;
(2) The Commission, in its discretion, determines that the presiding officer's initial decision is inconsistent with the staff's action as described in the notice required by § 2.1202(a) and that the inconsistency warrants Commission review, in which case the Commission will review the initial decision; or
(3) The Commission takes review of the decision sua sponte.
(b) The Commission may direct that the presiding officer certify the record to it without an initial decision and prepare a final decision if the Commission finds that due and timely execution of its functions warrants certification.
(c) An initial decision must be in writing and must be based only upon information in the record or facts officially noticed. The record must include all information submitted in the proceeding with respect to which all parties have been given reasonable prior notice and an opportunity to comment as provided in §§ 2.1207 or 2.1208. The initial decision must include:
(1) Findings, conclusions, and rulings, with the reasons or basis for them, on all material issues of fact or law admitted as part of the contentions in the proceeding;
(2) The appropriate ruling, order, or grant or denial of relief with its effective date;
(3) The action the NRC staff shall take upon transmittal of the decision to the NRC staff under paragraph (e) of this section, if the initial decision is inconsistent with the NRC staff action as described in the notice required by § 2.1202(a); and
(4) The time within which a petition for Commission review may be filed, the time within which any answers to a petition for review may be filed, and the date when the decision becomes final in the absence of a petition for Commission review or Commission sua sponte review.
(d) Pending review and final decision by the Commission, an initial decision resolving all issues before the presiding officer is immediately effective upon issuance except as otherwise provided by this part (e.g., § 2.340) or by the Commission in special circumstances.
(e) Once an initial decision becomes final, the Secretary shall transmit the decision to the NRC staff for action in accordance with the decision.
[77 FR 46598, Aug. 3, 2012; 79 FR 66601, Nov. 10, 2014]