[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 138 (Thursday, July 19, 2007)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 39593-39604]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 07-3516]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Office of the Secretary

49 CFR Part 71

[OST Docket No. 2007-28746]
RIN 2105-AD71


Standard Time Zone Boundary in Southwest Indiana

AGENCY: Office of the Secretary (OST), the Department of Transportation 
(DOT).

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: DOT proposes to relocate the time zone boundary in Indiana to 
move Knox, Daviess, Martin, Pike, and Dubois Counties from the Central 
Time Zone to the Eastern Time Zone. This action is taken at the request 
of the Boards of Commissioners of each of the counties. DOT requests 
comment on whether this change would serve the convenience of commerce, 
the statutory standard for a time zone change and whether the time zone 
boundary should be changed for other contiguous counties in 
southwestern Indiana. Persons supporting or opposing the change should 
not assume that the change will be made merely because DOT is making 
the proposal. The final rule will be based on all of the information 
received during the entire rulemaking proceeding and whether the 
statutory standard has been met.

DATES: Comments should be received by August 20, 2007 to be assured of 
consideration. Comments received after that date will be considered to 
the extent practicable. If the time zone boundary is changed as a 
result of this rulemaking, the effective date would be November 4, 
2007.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods:
     Web site: http://dms.dot.gov. Follow the instructions for 
submitting comments on the DOT electronic docket site.
     Fax: 1-202-493-2251.
     Mail: Docket Management Facility; U.S. Department of 
Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Room W12-140, Washington, 
DC 20590-0001.
     Hand Delivery: Room W12-140 on the plaza level of the U.S. 
Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, 
DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal 
holidays.
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://
www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments.
    General Instructions: All submissions must include the agency name 
and docket number (OST Docket Number 2007-28746) or Regulatory 
Identification Number (RIN 2105-AD71) for this rulemaking. Note that 
all comments received will be posted without change (including any 
personal information provided) to http://dms.dot.gov. Please refer to 
the Privacy Act heading under Regulatory Notices.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or 
comments received, go to http://dms.dot.gov at any time or to Room W12-
140 on the plaza level of the U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 
New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Judith S. Kaleta, Office of the 
General Counsel, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey 
Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590, indianatime@dot.gov, (202) 493-0992.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Current Indiana Time Observance

    Indiana is divided into 92 counties. Under Federal law, 75 counties 
are in the Eastern Time Zone and 17 are in the Central Time Zone. There 
are six Central Time Zone counties in the northwest (Lake, Porter, La 
Porte, Starke, Newton, and Jasper) and eleven in the southwest (Knox, 
Daviess, Martin, Gibson, Pike, Dubois, Posey, Vanderburgh, Warrick, 
Spencer, and Perry). Neighboring states differ as to whether they 
observe Eastern or Central Time. Illinois and western Kentucky observe 
Central Time, while eastern Kentucky, Ohio, and the portion of Michigan 
adjoining Indiana observe Eastern Time.
    Federal law provides that an individual State can decide whether or 
not to observe daylight saving time. In 2005, the Indiana General 
Assembly adopted legislation (Pub. L. 243-005 or the Indiana Act) that 
provides that the entire State of Indiana would observe daylight saving 
time beginning in 2006. In addition, the Indiana Act addressed the 
issue of changing the Eastern and Central Time Zone boundaries.
    In January 2006 (71 FR 3228) and February 2007 (72 FR 6170), DOT 
completed rulemaking proceedings establishing new time zone boundaries 
that resulted in the current time zone observance. Knox, Daviess, 
Martin, Pike, and Dubois Counties (the Petitioning Counties), which 
were moved to the Central Time Zone in January 2006, have now filed a 
Joint Petition requesting a time zone change back to the Eastern Time 
Zone.

Statutory Requirements

    Under the Standard Time Act of 1918, as amended by the Uniform Time 
Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. 260-64), the Secretary of Transportation has 
authority to issue regulations modifying the boundaries between time 
zones in the United States in order to move an area from one time zone 
to another. The standard to modify a boundary contained in the statute 
for such decisions is ``regard for the convenience of commerce and the 
existing junction points and division points of common carriers engaged 
in interstate or foreign commerce.'' 15 U.S.C. 261.

DOT Procedures To Change a Time Zone Boundary

    DOT has typically used a set of procedures to address time zone 
issues. Under these procedures, DOT will generally begin a rulemaking 
proceeding to change a time zone boundary if the highest elected 
officials in the area submit a petition requesting a time zone change 
and provide adequate data supporting the proposed change. We ask that 
the petition include, or be accompanied by, detailed information 
supporting the requesting party's contention that the requested change 
would serve the convenience of commerce. The principle for deciding 
whether to change a time zone is defined very broadly to include 
consideration of all impacts of such a change on a community. We also 
ask that the supporting documentation address, at a minimum, each of 
the

[[Page 39594]]

following questions in as much detail as possible:
    1. From where do businesses in the community get their supplies, 
and to where do they ship their goods or products?
    2. From where does the community receive television and radio 
broadcasts?
    3. Where are the newspapers published that serve the community?
    4. From where does the community get its bus and passenger rail 
services; if there is no scheduled bus or passenger rail service in the 
community, to where must residents go to obtain these services?
    5. Where is the nearest airport; if it is a local service airport, 
to what major airport does it carry passengers?
    6. What percentage of residents of the community work outside the 
community; where do these residents work?
    7. What are the major elements of the community's economy; is the 
community's economy improving or declining; what Federal, State, or 
local plans, if any, are there for economic development in the 
community?
    8. If residents leave the community for schooling, recreation, 
health care, or religious worship, what standard of time is observed in 
the places where they go for these purposes?
    In addition, we consider any other information that the county or 
local officials believe to be relevant to the proceeding. We consider 
the effect on economic, cultural, social, and civic activities, and how 
a change in time zone would affect businesses, communication, 
transportation, and education.

2005-2006 Indiana Time Zone Rulemaking Proceedings Involving the 
Petitioning Counties

    On August 17, 2005, DOT published a notice in the Federal Register 
inviting county and local officials in Indiana that wished to change 
their current time zone in response to the Indiana Act to notify DOT of 
their request for a change by September 16, 2005, and to provide data 
in response to the questions identified in the previous section on DOT 
Procedures to Change a Time Zone Boundary. DOT received 19 petitions 
from counties asking to be changed from the Eastern Time Zone to the 
Central Time Zone, including the five Petitioning Counties.
    The Petitioning Counties are located between Evansville and 
Indianapolis, near the geographic center of North America and the 
median center of the U.S. population. The Petitioning Counties are 
bordered to the north and east by counties in Indiana that are 
currently located in the Eastern Time Zone. The Petitioning Counties 
are bordered to the west by Illinois and to the south by counties in 
Indiana that are currently located in the Central Time Zone. According 
to data from STATS Indiana (an information service of the Indiana 
Business Research Center at Indiana University's Kelly School of 
Business), the Petitioning Counties had a total population of 132,842 
in 2005. The Petitioning Counties were five of the eight counties that 
moved from the Eastern Time Zone to the Central Time Zone under DOT's 
January 2006 final rule.
    In the original 2005 rulemaking proceeding, the Petitioning 
Counties submitted their petitions individually. In their 2005 
petitions, they enumerated reasons for a move to the Central Time Zone 
based in large part on comments made during open, local public meetings 
in the respective counties. The Daviess County petition emphasized 
Evansville (in the Central Time Zone) as the place with the closest 
airport and the place where its residents shop, conduct business, and 
receive television broadcasts, with ``numerous citizens'' employed in 
Gibson County (in the Central Time Zone). The Dubois County petition 
pointed out that while many services are obtained within-county, the 
decision to move to the Central Time Zone was supported by ``60 to 70% 
of the general public, by representatives of three local school 
districts, and by approximately 50% of local business and industry.'' 
The Knox County petition stated that many of its residents work in the 
Central Time Zone, creating ``time zone issues during substantial 
portions of the year'' and those residents who leave for schooling, 
recreation, healthcare and religious worship go to areas in the Central 
Time Zone. The Martin County petition stated that ``inclusion in the 
Central Time Zone is preferred by a majority of those responding,'' 
that 40% of its residents work outside of the County (mainly in the 
Central Time Zone), and that the primary providers of goods and 
recipients of products to and from the County are already located in or 
are petitioning to be in the Central Time Zone. The Pike County 
petition cited television and radio broadcasting, the interests of its 
mining industry and an increasing number of employees commuting to 
counties in the Central Time Zone.
    Based on these petitions and comments that were submitted to the 
docket and made at the public hearings, as well as an analysis of 
Indiana economic, workforce, transportation, and education regions as 
well as media/commerce data, DOT concluded that the Petitioning 
Counties have stronger ties to each other and to other counties to 
their south in the Central Time Zone than to the counties on their 
northern and eastern borders in the Eastern Time Zone. DOT, therefore, 
granted the petitions and changed the time zone boundaries for the 
Petitioning Counties from the Eastern Time Zone to the Central Time 
Zone. The change to the Central Time Zone became effective on April 2, 
2006.
    Only a few months later, on August 18, 2006, the Boards of 
Commissioners of the Petitioning Counties jointly submitted a petition 
(Joint Petition) in which they enumerated the reasons that the 
Petitioning Counties, as a unit, should be changed back to the Eastern 
Time Zone. As compared to the original petitions from the Petitioning 
Counties, the Joint Petition includes updated answers to the questions 
DOT considers in making time zone determinations as well as exhibits in 
support of these answers. The Joint Petition provides more detailed 
responses to DOT's questions related to community imports and exports, 
television and radio broadcasts, newspapers, bus and passenger rail 
services, airports/airline services, worker commuting patterns, the 
community's economy/economic development, and schooling, recreation, 
health care, or religious worship.
    The Joint Petition requests a change that is contrary to the 
Petitioning Counties' positions in their original individual petitions. 
The Joint Petition claims the original petitions ``were incomplete and 
conclusory, and the information they contained was limited and largely 
based on opinion and not backed by substantial and verifiable 
evidence.'' The Joint Petition states that, since the January 2006 
ruling, there has been ``a groundswell of support for returning to the 
Eastern Time Zone, which has been a product of residents and businesses 
having been inconvenienced in ways that they could not have fully 
anticipated until the switch occurred.'' Accordingly, the Joint 
Petition claims ``to contain more extensive and thorough research on 
this issue.''
    The Joint Petition was accompanied by letters from Indiana Governor 
Mitchell Daniels, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, and the 
Indiana Department of Workforce Development. The Governor wrote in 
support of the Joint Petition, stating that putting more of the State 
in the same time zone will provide clarity on the time questions and 
advance economic growth. The two organizations addressed regional 
connectivity. They

[[Page 39595]]

noted that they established their respective State regions based on 
their ability to deliver services. They did not establish regions based 
on time zones or ``convenience of commerce.''
    After reviewing the Joint Petition and its accompanying exhibits 
and letters of support, on September 28, 2006, DOT sent a letter to the 
Petitioning Counties requesting that certain procedural concerns be 
addressed. Specifically, DOT requested the submission of amended 
signature pages for each county, certifying that the request was the 
result of official action by the Board of County Commissioners, the 
vote of the Board members concerning the submission of the Joint 
Petition, the date of the vote, and the signature for each Board 
member. The Petitioning Counties complied with this request on November 
13, 2006 (First Supplemental Response).
    On November 14, 2006, the DOT sent a second letter seeking 
clarification and additional information from the Petitioning Counties 
before making any determination on whether to propose a time zone 
boundary change for the Petitioning Counties. In turn, on December 6, 
2006, the Petitioning Counties submitted to DOT a supplemental response 
(Second Supplemental Response) and appendix to DOT's request for this 
additional substantive information.
    Upon reviewing the Second Supplemental Response, DOT determined 
that while the Petitioning Counties provided answers to most of DOT's 
inquiries, in some instances gaps remained, and there were 
inconsistencies in the responses. Information provided by the 
Petitioning Counties needed to be corrected or clarified. On April 2, 
2007, therefore, DOT sent another letter to the Petitioning Counties 
requesting additional information and verification of the data 
submitted. This request was necessary in light of the lack of complete 
and accurate information previously provided to DOT by the Petitioning 
Counties. DOT noted, ``While the clarification of particular facts may 
not be dispositive to DOT's determination that a time zone change would 
serve the convenience of commerce standard, we want to ensure the 
integrity of the data we rely upon.'' On May 29, 2007, the Petitioning 
Counties responded by letter (Third Supplemental Response), accompanied 
by numerous exhibits.

Comments to the Docket

    There are currently nearly 300 entries to the docket addressing the 
request of the Petitioning Counties to be changed back to the Eastern 
Time Zone and the information submitted by the Petitioning Counties. 
These comments express the preferences of the residents of the 
Petitioning Counties and the views of businesses and individuals on how 
a particular time zone has impacted or would impact the Petitioning 
Counties. The focus of this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking is on the 
Joint Petition and Supplemental Responses. Before making a final 
determination on whether to change the time zone boundaries for the 
Petitioning Counties, we will carefully review the Joint Petition and 
Supplemental Responses in conjunction with any additional comments 
received and data gathered during the rulemaking process.

DOT Determination

    Based on the Joint Petition and the three Supplemental Responses, 
DOT finds that the Petitioning Counties have provided enough 
information to justify proposing to change their boundary from the 
Central Time Zone to the Eastern Time Zone. As set forth below, the 
Petitioning Counties addressed all of the factors that we consider in 
these proceedings and overall made a reasonable case that changing back 
the Petitioning Counties to the Eastern Time Zone would serve ``the 
convenience of commerce.''

Community Imports and Exports

    The 2005 individual petitions from each Petitioning County to move 
from the Eastern Time Zone to the Central Time Zone did not include 
very detailed analyses of community imports and exports. On the other 
hand, in the Joint Petition and the Second and Third Supplemental 
Responses, the Petitioning Counties provide additional evidence in 
support of the contention that, when considered as a single unit, the 
balance of the evidence supports placement in the Eastern Time Zone.
    The original Daviess County petition stated that the largest 
metropolitan area where its residents transact business is Evansville. 
In contrast, the Joint Petition quotes the Executive Director of the 
Daviess County Economic Development Corporation as stating that 
businesses in Daviess County ``uniformly desire to be on Eastern Time'' 
and that the top businesses and industries there ship most of their 
products into the Eastern Time Zone. The original Dubois County 
petition stated that its businesses ``acquire and ship supplies and 
products nationally and internationally, and probably as to purchase 
and sales no time zone would have priority over any other zone.'' On 
the other hand, citing the Directors of the Jasper and Huntingburg 
Chambers of Commerce, the Joint Petition states that the major 
employers in Dubois County ship their products to major metropolitan 
areas up and down the East Coast and that ``the dollar volume of 
commerce in the county is driven by customers and suppliers in the 
Eastern Time Zone.'' The original Knox County petition stated that its 
businesses ``obtain supplies and ship goods and products from and to 
locations in various time zones'' and to ``all parts of the United 
States and the Northern Hemisphere.'' The Joint Petition makes a 
similar assertion, stating specifically that Futaba Indiana of America 
manufactures door frames for Toyota's Princeton, Indiana plant in the 
Central Time Zone and also ships products to Toyota's Georgetown, 
Indiana plant in the Eastern Time Zone. The Joint Petition adds that 
another large employer in Dubois County, Gemtron/Schott, ships products 
all over the United States. The original Martin County petition 
declared that the primary providers and recipients of its products were 
counties petitioning for placement or currently in the Central Time 
Zone. On the other hand, the Joint Petition refers to a business 
manager for EG&G Crane Operations located at the Naval Surface Warfare 
Center Crane Division (NSWC Crane) and identifies NSWC Crane as the 
largest employer in the County, and claims that although NSWC Crane 
ships its products throughout the United States, its two largest 
customers are located in the Eastern Time Zone. (We note that this 
information comes from the Joint Petition, not directly from NSWC Crane 
or its officials.) Finally, while the original Pike County petition 
made no mention of its community imports and exports, it noted that 
Pike County has a significant coal mining industry. The Joint Petition 
reiterates the importance of the coal mining industry in Pike County 
and that the bulk of coal mined in the County is used by two of the 
County's largest employers (Indiana Power & Light and Hoosier Energy), 
which maintain headquarters and generating plants in the Eastern Time 
Zone.
    In addition to focusing on the imports and exports in each of the 
Petitioning Counties, the Joint Petition takes a broader perspective. 
Citing statistics compiled by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce 
(Chamber), it notes that over one-third of all Indiana's exports are 
sent to the Eastern Time Zone, whereas only one-fourth of all Indiana's 
exports had a final destination in the Central Time Zone. The Chamber's 
statistics

[[Page 39596]]

also indicate that over one-half of Indiana's imports come from a 
``point of origin'' in the Eastern Time Zone, whereas less than one-
half of all Indiana imports had a point of origin in the Central Time 
Zone. However, DOT questioned the Petitioning Counties on whether these 
facts support a move to the Eastern Time Zone, noting that these 
statistics also reveal that two-thirds of products are exported to 
locations other than the Eastern Time Zone and that just less than one-
half come from a point of origin other than the Eastern Time Zone. In 
their Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties 
nonetheless contend that, although the total import/export data may not 
support a change to the Eastern Time Zone, they wanted to ensure that 
they addressed all the criteria considered by DOT and asserted that the 
balance of the evidence presented in the Joint Petition supports a move 
from the Central Time Zone to the Eastern Time Zone.
    The Joint Petition also points out that ``if the Petitioning 
Counties are put on Eastern Time, all of the nearest Wal-Marts for 
residents in the Petitioning Counties would be on Eastern Time.'' The 
Joint Petition claims that, although the majority of these stores are 
open 24 hours a day, the Jasper location in Dubois closes during the 
night and has a different schedule than its distribution center 
(located in Jackson County, in the Eastern Time Zone), thereby 
adversely affecting its shipping schedule. The Joint Petition contends 
this is important for the counties because many ``[i]ndividuals and 
small businesses * * * depend on Wal-Mart Stores and Supercenters for 
their goods and supplies.'' Thus, the Joint Petition concludes that the 
convenience of commerce would be best served if all stores and 
distribution centers were located in the same zone, in order to reduce 
confusion for just-in-time delivery systems and to accommodate work 
schedules.
    In the Third Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties 
clarify that the Jasper Wal-Mart is open 24 hours a day. Nevertheless, 
the Third Supplemental Response notes that, because the pharmacy and 
automotive department operate under limited hours, it might better 
serve the convenience of commerce if the store was located in the 
Eastern Time Zone.
    The Joint Petition also states that product manufacturers (the 
major employers in Dubois County) ship their products mainly to ``major 
metropolitan areas up and down the East Coast,'' while the ``majority 
of suppliers are likewise located in, or are in areas petitioning to be 
in, the Eastern Time Zone.'' In fact, ``over 50% of the dollar volume 
of commerce is driven by customers in the Eastern Time Zone'' for those 
companies. In response to DOT's inquiry regarding the fact that Dubois 
County has historically been on a different time than its suppliers and 
customers during seven months of the year (before Indiana began to 
observe daylight saving time in 2006), the Second Supplemental Response 
notes that the convenience of commerce would nonetheless be even better 
served if businesses could communicate in ``real time'' (communicating 
at the same hour in both places) with their customers during the course 
of an entire year. They claim that this move would shift resources away 
from coping mechanisms and toward more productive business activities.
    In the Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties 
address DOT's questions about commerce in Knox County arising from the 
Joint Petition. The Second Supplemental Response claims that a move to 
the Eastern Time Zone would put Futaba Indiana of America (FIA), 
identified as a major Knox County automobile parts producer, in the 
same time zone as its two important customers in the Eastern Time Zone. 
Although FIA also ships its products to locations in the Central Time 
Zone (including Chicago and Texas), the Second Supplemental Response 
asserts that harmonizing the manufacturing plant with at least two of 
its customers located in the Eastern Time Zone would positively advance 
the convenience of commerce. DOT requested support for these assertions 
and, in the Third Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties cite 
to an FIA receptionist, newspaper articles, and the Director of the 
Knox County Development Corporation in support of their position on 
this issue.
    While DOT remains unconvinced by the assertions of the Petitioning 
Counties as they relate to FIA and the Knox County economy, the 
Petitioning Counties have submitted sufficient information to show that 
many businesses and industries located in the Petitioning Counties have 
substantial business connections in the Eastern Time Zone that would 
justify proposing to move the time zone boundary for the Petitioning 
Counties to the Eastern Time Zone. In addition, the Petitioning 
Counties have submitted sufficient information to justify proposing to 
move the time zone boundary based on their claims that the convenience 
of commerce would better be served if businesses did not have to adjust 
for time zone differences. DOT solicits further information concerning 
community imports and exports that would aid in determining whether a 
change in the time zone for the Petitioning Counties would serve the 
convenience of commerce.

Television and Radio Broadcasts

    With regard to television and radio broadcasts, the original 
petitions submitted by each Petitioning County made general statements 
about transmissions that each Petitioning County receives. The original 
Daviess County petition stated that it receives its television 
broadcasts from both Evansville and Terre Haute. The original Dubois 
County petition stated that it receives radio transmissions from within 
the county and television broadcasts from Evansville, Louisville, Terre 
Haute, and Indianapolis. The original Knox County petition pointed out 
that it is the second-largest television audience for Terre Haute and 
the fourth-largest for Evansville. The original Martin County petition 
noted that it is served by television stations located in Evansville in 
Vanderburgh County and Vincennes in Knox County. Finally, the original 
Pike County petition stated that the majority of its broadcasts 
originate out of Evansville.
    The Joint Petition and Second and Third Supplemental Responses 
provide more detailed information regarding television and radio 
broadcasting in the Petitioning Counties. The Joint Petition states 
that the majority of the Petitioning Counties (Knox, Daviess, and 
Martin) are in the Terre Haute Designated Market Area (DMA), in the 
Eastern Time Zone. The remaining Petitioning Counties (Pike and Dubois) 
are part of the Evansville DMA, in the Central Time Zone.
    The Joint Petition claims that every radio station with the 
strongest signal in the Petitioning Counties is currently located, or 
petitioning to be, in the Eastern Time Zone. In support of this 
statement, the Joint Petition includes two charts that list the 
stations (both FM and AM) with the three strongest signals that reach 
each of the five petitioning counties. These charts also indicate the 
city and county where the station is currently located, as well as the 
time zone of the station's location if the petition were granted. DOT 
questioned the decision to include only the signals with the three 
strongest frequencies, whether these were the strongest frequencies, 
and the choice to include certain frequencies themselves in the chart.
    In the Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties

[[Page 39597]]

again claim that the chart in the Joint Petition ``demonstrates that 
the Petitioning Counties are oriented toward the Eastern Time Zone.'' 
In order to supplement that claim, the Petitioning Counties submitted a 
second set of charts in Appendix C to the Second Supplemental Response 
(not ``Appendix B'' as referenced in the Second Supplemental Response). 
Rather than including the three strongest signals available in each of 
the respective counties, these charts provide more specific 
information, including all radio stations (both FM and AM) and the 
major city of the listening audience of each petitioning county: 
Washington in Davies, Jasper in Dubois, Vincennes in Knox, Loogootee in 
Martin, and Petersburg in Pike. Based on classifications by http://
www.radio-locator.com, the chart arranges the stations in order of 
strength of signal to the listening area, with the strongest signals 
listed first. The chart also includes the current time zone of the 
radio signal's origin and the time zone if the petition were granted. 
The only difference between the chart in the Joint Petition and the 
chart in the Second Supplemental Response is the differing time zone 
origin. Stations (both FM and AM) that originated in the Petitioning 
Counties would move from the Central Time Zone to the Eastern Time 
Zone. With such a uniform shift, it is not clear that a change in time 
zone would serve the convenience of commerce. Furthermore, DOT 
questions whether signal strength is sufficient evidence to support the 
conclusion that the particular time zone matters for radio 
broadcasting. The Petitioning Counties have not shown how having a 
strong signal translates into an increased audience nor have they 
accounted for the type of radio programming that is being offered.
    With regard to television broadcasting, the Joint Petition includes 
a chart listing the TV stations for the Petitioning Counties, the city 
and county where each station is located, and the time zone of the 
station if the petition were granted. In addition, the Joint Petition 
indicates that the National Weather Service Center serving four of the 
Petitioning Counties (Daviess, Knox, Martin, and Dubois) is in the 
Eastern Time Zone, while only one county (Pike) has the National 
Weather Service Center in the Central Time Zone. The Petitioning 
Counties claim that because ``most of the radio and television stations 
that cover local news and weather in the Petitioning Counties is either 
located within the Petitioning Counties themselves or are in counties 
in the Eastern Time Zone, the convenience of commerce is best served by 
moving the Petitioning Counties to Eastern Time.''
    Because the Joint Petition's claims that ``these counties are 
served by various cable systems and a variety of satellite systems,'' 
DOT requested that the Petitioning Counties list the channels offered 
by any cable providers in each county that are locally generated and 
the location and time zone of those broadcasts. In the Second 
Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties provide a chart 
indicating the Designated Market Area and the significantly viewed 
channels for each County with the city and county where the station is 
located as well as the current time zone and the projected time zone if 
the Joint Petition were granted. The only significant change in time 
zone involves stations located within the Petitioning Counties 
themselves, which move from the Central Time Zone to the Eastern Time 
Zone.
    In further support of a change to the Eastern Time Zone, in the 
Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties state that, 
under the status quo, ``viewers in the Petitioning Counties may miss 
their news because it comes on at 5 a.m. in the morning and at 4 p.m. 
in the evening.'' On the other hand, if the Joint Petition were 
granted, the Petitioning Counties simply argue that ``the majority of 
viewers in the Petitioning Counties who work 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (and 
currently receive their programming from a station operating on Eastern 
Time) will receive their local news before going to work in the morning 
and after they return from work in the evening.'' Seeking clarification 
of this argument and additional justification, DOT wrote to the 
Petition Counties and noted that each of the Petitioning Counties 
receives a signal that originates in the Central Time Zone. In the 
Third Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties assert, 
``Convenience of commerce is served by providing viewers with better 
access to the market designated to provide them coverage'' and refer to 
significantly viewed stations, which are the most viewed stations. The 
significantly reviewed stations in the three Petitioning Counties that 
are in the Terre Haute Designated Market Area are in the Eastern Time 
Zone.
    The Petitioning Counties have not provided sufficient information 
concerning the television/radio broadcasting aspect of the convenience 
for commerce standard to justify proposing to change the time zone 
boundary. DOT questions whether radio signal strength is enough 
evidence to support proposing a change in time zone. In addition, the 
majority of television signals become aligned with the Eastern Time 
Zone because the Counties have petitioned to move as a single unit. DOT 
seeks comments on the information submitted by the Petitioning Counties 
and requests any additional information on television and radio 
broadcasting, including audience size in the Petitioning Counties, that 
would aid in determining whether a time zone change for these Counties 
would serve the convenience of commerce.

Newspapers

    Only three out of the five original individual petitions, Dubois, 
Knox, and Martin Counties, discussed newspaper distribution numbers 
within their counties. These three petitions emphasized that the 
primary newspapers delivered are local daily newspapers. Nevertheless, 
the original Dubois County petition acknowledged receipt of newspapers 
from Evansville in the Central Time Zone and Louisville in the Eastern 
Time Zone. The original Knox County petition also noted that there is a 
``substantial circulation'' of the Evansville Courier, and that 
residents also receive newspapers from Terre Haute and Indianapolis, 
both in the Eastern Time Zone.
    The Joint Petition expounds on the idea that the Petitioning 
Counties are largely served by their local newspapers. The Joint 
Petition states that residents of the Petitioning Counties rely on 
other newspapers published in or adjacent to their own counties, ``all 
of which are already in or are petitioning to be in the Eastern Time 
Zone'' and thereby ``likely serve the advertising needs of local 
businesses.'' The Joint Petition acknowledges that the Petitioning 
Counties are served by both the Indianapolis Star (with a total 
circulation of 4,251) and the Evansville Courier & Press (with a total 
circulation of 12,740). However, the Joint Petition claims that these 
papers focus almost exclusively on national news and the local news 
particular to their cities, Indianapolis and Evansville. The Second 
Supplemental Response supports this claim by stating that ``[t]here is 
very little if any advertising by companies doing business in the 
Petitioning Counties.'' The Second Supplemental Response also notes 
that the ``vast majority'' of businesses advertising in the Courier and 
Press are located in Evansville or Henderson, Kentucky (both in the 
Central Time Zone) to support the claim that those newspapers primarily 
serve the

[[Page 39598]]

communities in the immediate vicinity of the city. (The Second 
Supplemental Response also corrected the Joint Petition and 
acknowledged that the Courier and Press is distributed in Martin 
County.)
    The Joint Petition includes a chart that lists the names and 
circulation numbers of the local newspapers serving each of the 
Petitioning Counties, as well as the County and the time zone of 
publication if the petition is granted. For example, for Daviess 
County, the chart indicates that the Washington Times-Herald, with a 
weekly circulation of 6,459, is published in Daviess, which will be 
moved to the Eastern Time Zone if the petition is granted. In addition, 
the Washington Extra, another local newspaper identified in the chart, 
is published in Daviess County and (like the Washington Times-Herald) 
has a significantly higher weekly circulation in Daviess County than 
either the Indianapolis Star (496) or the Evansville Courier & Press 
(92). In total, all four local newspapers serving Daviess County are 
published within the Petitioning Counties. This pattern is consistent 
with the circulation patterns in the other Petitioning Counties as 
well, where the total circulation for the main local newspaper 
published in each county far outweighs the circulation for either the 
Indianapolis Star or the Evansville Courier & Press.
    There are only two local newspapers shown in the chart that are 
published outside of the Petitioning Counties: the Paoli News 
Republican, which is published in Orange and has a weekly circulation 
of 400 in Dubois County; and the Bedford Times-Mail, which is published 
in Lawrence County and has a negligible weekly circulation in both 
Dubois and Martin Counties. Both of these newspapers are published in 
the Eastern Time Zone and would continue to be published in the Eastern 
Time Zone if the Joint Petition were granted. The remaining local 
newspapers are all published in one of the five Petitioning Counties. 
According to the Joint Petition and reiterated in the Second 
Supplemental Response, these counties are served by a number of papers 
published locally, which ``likely serve the advertising needs of local 
businesses.'' The Second Supplemental Response claims, ``the lack of 
advertising by companies located in the Petitioning Counties suggests a 
lack of connection to the Evansville area.'' (Emphasis added.) The 
Second Supplemental Response concludes that, with regard to newspaper 
circulation, ``[t]his factors in favor of treating the Petitioning 
Counties as a unit and moving them all to Eastern Time as a block.'' 
Because the overwhelming majority of local newspapers in circulation 
within the Petitioning Counties are currently on Central Time, moving 
them as a ``block'' would simply represent a universal shift of local 
newspapers to Eastern Time if the petition were granted.
    In the Third Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties 
responded to DOT's question on whether the residents of the Petitioning 
Counties might shop or use the services of businesses that advertise in 
the Indianapolis Star or the Courier and Press. The Petitioning 
Counties admitted that discussions with individuals in the Petitioning 
Counties ``yielded different responses.'' There were no overwhelming 
preferences for either the Eastern or Central Time Zone shops or 
businesses advertising in these papers.
    The Petitioning Counties have not submitted sufficient information 
concerning the newspaper aspect of the convenience for commerce 
standard to justify proposing to change the time zone boundary based. 
DOT seeks comments on the information submitted by the Petitioning 
Counties and requests any additional information on newspaper 
circulation in the Petitioning Counties that would aid in determining 
whether a time zone change for these Counties would serve the 
convenience of commerce.

Bus and Passenger Rail Service

    Only three out of the five original individual petitions, from 
Dubois, Knox, and Pike Counties, discussed bus and rail service within 
their Counties. The original Dubois County petition stated that Dubois 
County is not served by passenger bus or rail service; however, such 
service is available out of Louisville, Indianapolis or Evansville. The 
original Knox County petition stated that its citizens can obtain bus 
service from Evansville and Terre Haute, and that passenger rail 
service is available in Effingham, Illinois and Indianapolis. The 
original Pike County petition stated that the closest major passenger 
rail and bus service is generally located in Evansville.
    With regard to bus service, the Joint Petition points out that 
three of the four Greyhound bus stations that are closest to the 
Petitioning Counties are on Eastern Time. It states that these stations 
are located in Indianapolis, Terre Haute, and Louisville in the Eastern 
Time Zone, and in Evansville in the Central Time Zone. The Joint 
Petition also claims that, although the Evansville station is 
relatively close to many residents of the Petitioning Counties, ``it 
only offers transportation to western and southern routes.'' On the 
other hand, the stations located in the Eastern Time Zone offer much 
broader service to the Petitioning Counties. For example, the Terre 
Haute station offers connections both to southwest destinations and to 
Indianapolis, which in turn provides service to all destinations. In 
addition, the Louisville station offers transportation to north, 
northeast, and southern destinations. Accordingly, the Joint Petition 
uses these bus service routes as support to change back to the Eastern 
Time Zone.
    With regard to rail service, the Joint Petition focuses on 
commercial rail carriers. The Joint Petition points out that, because 
most of the existing major junction and division points for common 
carriers are located in the Eastern Time Zone, it would best serve the 
convenience of commerce to place all of the Petitioning Counties on 
Eastern Time. Answering DOT's inquiry concerning the availability of 
passenger rail service to its residents and how changing to Eastern 
Time would impact such services, the Second Supplemental Response 
states that ``[n]one of the railroad companies that run through 
southwest Indiana provides passenger service in the area.'' Moreover, 
it states that Amtrak, the only passenger rail company in Indiana, runs 
on commercial lines only through northern and central Indiana (in the 
Eastern Time Zone), far from the Petitioning Counties. As such, the 
Petitioning Counties assert that ``[p]assenger rail schedules are not a 
factor here.''
    The Petitioning Counties have submitted sufficient information 
based on the bus service aspect of the convenience of commerce standard 
to justify proposing to change the time zone boundary. The Petitioning 
Counties have provided information on the broader bus service available 
in locations in the Eastern Time Zone. According to the Petitioning 
Counties, passenger rail service is not at issue. DOT seeks comment on 
the information submitted by the Petitioning Counties and requests any 
additional information on bus and rail services in the Petitioning 
Counties that would aid in determining whether a change in the time 
zone for the Petitioning Counties would serve the convenience of 
commerce.

Airports/Airline Services

    The original petitions for Daviess, Knox and Pike Counties stated 
that the closest airport providing passenger service to their 
respective counties is located in Evansville. The original petition for 
Dubois County stated that

[[Page 39599]]

the airport in the County serves primarily private business planes and 
lists Louisville, Evansville, and Indianapolis as ``major airports 
providing service'' to its residents. The original petition for Martin 
County noted that the nearest general airport is in Vanderburgh County 
in the Central Time Zone, and also noted that Martin County residents 
are served by local airports in Daviess and Dubois Counties.
    The Joint Petition discusses the three major airports that could 
potentially serve residents of the Petitioning Counties for commercial 
passenger service: one in the Central Time Zone in Evansville and two 
in the Eastern Time Zone in Indianapolis and Louisville. The Joint 
Petition acknowledges that the Evansville Regional Airport is the 
closest geographically for many residents in some parts of the 
Petitioning Counties. However, despite this proximity, the Joint 
Petition claims that, according to ``travel agents who serve residents 
in the Petitioning Counties,'' it is more expensive to fly out of 
Evansville and that the Evansville airport offers ``very few direct 
connections.'' The Joint Petition also states that Evansville offers 
direct flights to only six destinations: Chicago (O'Hare), Cincinnati, 
Atlanta, Memphis, Detroit, and Dallas. In contrast, the Joint Petition 
notes that the Indianapolis International Airport in the Eastern Time 
Zone services 34 destinations, while the Louisville International 
Airport, also in the Eastern Time Zone, services 28 destinations. The 
Joint Petition declares that ``Indianapolis is one of the top jumping-
off points for air travelers from the Petitioning Counties.'' To 
support this claim, the Joint Petition again relies on travel agents 
who serve residents in the Petitioning Counties and have reported that 
``70 to 75% of their customers fly out of Indianapolis or Louisville 
for reasons of cost or convenience.'' The Joint Petition does not offer 
any specific information regarding whether these are business or 
leisure travelers, the destination of these travelers, or whether the 
location, and therefore, the relevant time zone of the airport affected 
their choice. In addition, the Joint Petition, citing information 
obtained from an employee of NSWC Crane, points out that 80% of the 
employee travelers from Crane military base (located in Martin County) 
use the Indianapolis airport.
    The Joint Petition also provides detailed information regarding 
local service airports that are situated within or near the Petitioning 
Counties, and states that such ``airports provide county-based business 
with direct air travel access.'' The Joint Petition maintains that 
nearly all of these Indiana-based local airports would be in the 
Eastern Time Zone if the Petition were granted. However, the Second 
Supplemental Response clarifies that, although they are the ``nearest 
airports'' in terms of geographic location, none of the local airports 
situated in the Petitioning Counties provides commercial passenger 
service.
    The Joint Petition also notes that the two closest hubs of the 
largest private express package carriers serving the Petitioning 
Counties, United Parcel Service and Federal Express, are situated in 
the Eastern Time Zone, in Indianapolis and in Louisville, and that air 
travel for cargo is thus oriented toward counties that are already in 
the Eastern Time Zone.
    The Petitioning Counties have not submitted sufficient information 
concerning the airports/airline services aspect of the convenience of 
commerce standard to justify proposing to change the time zone 
boundary. DOT seeks comment on the information submitted by the 
Petitioning Counties and requests any additional information on airport 
and airlines services in the Petitioning Counties that would aid in 
determining whether changing the time zone for the Petitioning Counties 
would serve the convenience of commerce.

Worker Commuting Patterns

    The Joint Petition claims that the majority of workers in the 
Petitioning Counties live and work in their home counties. For those 
who work outside of their home counties, the Joint Petition states, 
``Of those migrating to a Petitioning County for work, the majority 
come from locations in the Eastern Time Zone. Of those leaving a 
Petitioning County for work, the majority go to locations in the 
Eastern Time Zone.'' The Joint Petition relies on commuting patterns 
data from the Indiana Department of Revenue. In the Third Supplemental 
Response, the Petitioning Counties explained that the basis of their 
statement was their consideration that the Petitioning Counties were in 
the Eastern Time Zone, ``as Eastern Time is the Petitioning Counties' 
desired time zone.'' The Third Supplemental goes on to say that the 
commuting patterns demonstrate the strong connection among the 
Petitioning Counties and recognizes that the commuters do not have a 
large impact on the overall workforce in most of the Petitioning 
Counties, with the exception of Martin County where commuters make up 
46.9% of the Martin County workforce.
    The Petitioning Counties have not submitted sufficient information 
concerning the worker commuting patterns aspect of the convenience of 
commerce standard to justify proposing to change in the time zone 
boundary. DOT seeks comment on the information submitted by the 
Petitioning Counties and requests any additional information on worker 
commuting patterns in the Petitioning Counties that would aid in 
determining whether changing their time zone boundaries.

The Community's Economy/Economic Development

    While the original Daviess County petition did not mention anything 
about the elements of the Daviess County economy, each of the other 
original petitions discussed each County's individual economy and 
economic development as one of the matters to consider as part of the 
convenience of commerce standard. The original Dubois County petition 
stated that the principle element of its economy is wood furniture 
manufacturing, followed by agriculture. The original Knox County 
petition mentioned healthcare and education as the major elements of 
its economy. The original Pike County petition stated that its economy 
is largely dependent on the local mining industry. The original Martin 
County petition noted that the major elements of its economy are 
``agriculture, timber, and technology connected to'' NSWC Crane. In 
addition, the original Martin petition mentioned that the local economy 
is expected to improve with the continued operation of NSWC Crane, and 
that Martin County is working along with Daviess and Greene Counties to 
develop a technology park adjacent to NSWC Crane.
    The Joint Petition provides additional information about the major 
elements of each County's economy, the state of the economy, and 
economic development. The Joint Petition states that manufacturing and 
agriculture are two of the leading industries in the local economies of 
several of the Petitioning Counties. Consequently, in order to increase 
their competitive edge over international competitors, Dubois County 
seeks placement in the same time zone as a significant number of its 
companies' suppliers and customers. Dubois County employers have 
reported that 60-90% of their business relationships remain in the 
Eastern Time Zone. Moreover, the Joint Petition refers to the President 
of the Knox County Development Corporation who anticipates that 
manufacturing growth experienced in that county should continue and 
does not foresee a shift to the Eastern Time Zone as having a negative 
impact. On the other hand, in

[[Page 39600]]

Pike County, local business and industry have been tied to coal mining 
and power generation and ``the industries that support them,'' 
including ``fabricating, welding, and shipping.'' One of the main coal 
mine operators in Pike County, Solar Sources, Inc., has its 
headquarters in Indianapolis and several mines in the Petitioning 
Counties. As such, the Joint Petition states that shifting Pike County 
to the Eastern Time Zone would serve the convenience of commerce by 
helping to prevent the scheduling and shipping problems that have 
coincided with the placement of the Petitioning Counties in the Central 
Time Zone.
    The Joint Petition also focuses on the economy of the Petitioning 
Counties as a block, and states that the Petitioning Counties have 
stronger economic and cultural connections to each other, and the 
Indiana counties currently in the Eastern Time Zone, than they do with 
other southern Indiana counties and the Evansville-based economy in the 
Central Time Zone. The Petitioning Counties assert that one major 
economic development project potentially shared by all of the 
Petitioning Counties is the proposed extension of Interstate 69 (I-69) 
through central and southwestern Indiana. The Petitioning Counties 
point out that the expansion of I-69 will provide more economical and 
efficient access to Indianapolis, although they cannot ``precisely 
quantify the economic impact to the region of the planned highway 
expansion.'' Nonetheless, because traffic will be able to flow north 
from southwest Indiana to the larger network of highways that go 
through Indianapolis, the highway will provide ``a crucial link to 
central Indiana and beyond.'' As such, the Petitioning Counties contend 
that they should be placed in the Eastern Time Zone in order to stay 
associated with the infrastructure and markets that will be made more 
accessible through the extension of I-69. The Second Supplemental 
Response notes that updated information on the project ``has yet to be 
completed.''
    The Joint Petition also emphasizes the economic impact in both 
Daviess and Martin Counties of the NSWC Crane, which it asserts serves 
as a large regional employer and has entrances that currently span two 
time zones and three counties. The Joint Petition notes that Daviess 
County has partnered with the local and county redevelopment 
commissions of Martin County and Greene County, which is located in the 
Eastern Time Zone, to create a major technology park called ``The West 
Gate @ Crane,'' which is ``expected to become Indiana's showcase 
technology facility for intelligent and environmentally balanced 
development.'' Moreover, the Joint Petition states that a shift to the 
Eastern Time Zone would ``greatly simplify communications and improve 
the support'' of NSWC Crane's primary customers, which are located in 
the Eastern Time Zone. The Joint Petition notes that 67% of Crane's 
employees commute from the Eastern to the Central Time Zone for work, 
causing business efficiency and productivity to drop as a consequence 
of irregular business hours and meetings, relying on information 
provided by leaders of six employee organizations on NSWC Crane. 
Moreover, the Second Supplemental Response points out that this 
situation has gotten worse with the implementation of daylight savings 
time in Indiana, which ``has moved 76% of NSWC Crane's workforce to the 
Eastern Time Zone while the plant has remained on Central Time.'' The 
Second Supplemental Response quotes the President of Crane Technology, 
Inc. as stating that this has created a ``nightmare for scheduling and 
employee productivity'' because ``the plant must operate two sets of 
clocks to complete its business'' and ``virtually all employees 
strongly desire a move that would bring all workers on the same time.'' 
The Third Supplemental Response says that EG&G Technical Services, 
Crane, is ``a major contractor supporting'' NSWC Crane and states that, 
according to this contractor, ``core business hours have been reduced'' 
and this change ``adversely impacts workload execution and delays 
meetings and decisions.'' No information was provided by officials from 
NSCW Crane.
    The Petitioning Counties have submitted sufficient information 
concerning the community's economy/economic development aspect of the 
convenience of commerce standard to justify proposing to change in the 
time zone boundary. DOT solicits further information and data 
supporting or rebutting the information supplied by the Petitioning 
Counties and how it supports a change in the time zone for the 
convenience of commerce.

Schools, Recreation, Health Care, or Religious Worship

    With regard to schools, the original Daviess County petition stated 
that the closest State college is the University of Southern Indiana 
(USI) in Evansville in the Central Time Zone. The original Dubois 
County petition stated that the majority of students leaving the 
community for post-high school education attend universities in the 
Eastern Time Zone, although ``a number'' attend schools in Evansville. 
The original Knox County petition pointed out that residents who leave 
the community for school go to Illinois, or Gibson or Vanderburgh 
Counties, all in the Central Time Zone. The original Martin County 
petition stated that the primary local outlets for higher education 
were in the Central Time Zone and include USI , IVY Tech, and the 
University of Evansville, in Vanderburgh County; Vincennes University 
with campuses in Knox and Dubois Counties; and Oakland City University 
in Gibson County. The original Pike petition did not mention where its 
citizens go for higher education.
    Unlike the original petitions which focused on higher education, 
the Joint Petition focuses on primary and secondary education, 
including sporting events, and also on vocational students. The Joint 
Petition notes that there are 15 school districts covering the five 
Petitioning Counties. No school district in the Petitioning Counties is 
in more than one time zone. The Joint Petition points out, however, 
that schools in these districts compete in athletic events against 
schools that are located in other time zones. Consequently, ``many away 
games have to be played in counties that are already in the Eastern 
Time Zone,'' which causes ``time-related confusion of both students and 
parents.'' To support this claim, the Joint Petition cites to the 
football schedule for North Daviess High School in Daviess County, 
which includes 6 games in the Eastern Time Zone (or 67% of its games). 
In the Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties provide 
their high school basketball schedules stating, ``If the Petitioning 
Counties are shifted to the Eastern Time Zone, there will be a 
reduction in the number of games played in differing time zones from 27 
to 18.'' The Second Supplemental Response explained that this would 
``reduce the games played in different time zones to between 6% and 
17%,'' depending on the school. The Second Supplemental Response also 
points out that only one high school, Pike Central, would play more 
games in a time zone different from their own, if the Joint Petition 
were granted. The Second Supplemental Response concludes, ``Based on 
the significant reduction of games played outside the school's time 
zone in four out of the five Petitioning Counties, a move to Eastern 
Time best serves the convenience of commerce by easing time-related 
confusion of both students and parents.''
    The Joint Petition states that students in the Petitioning Counties 
who attend

[[Page 39601]]

vocational schools would also benefit from their counties being 
switched to the Eastern Time Zone and provided statistics for 
vocational students in Martin County. The Exhibit to the Joint Petition 
indicates that 15 students must travel back and forth across time zones 
in the Shoals Community School Corporation in Martin County. The Second 
Supplemental Response provides information on vocational students in 
Pike and Dubois Counties, but not for Daviess and Knox Counties, noting 
an inability to obtain statistics for these Counties. The Second 
Supplemental Response mentions Twin Rivers Vocational School (a 
cooperative between school corporations in Knox County, and Greene and 
Sullivan Counties, which are already in the Eastern Time Zone) as a 
school that currently has scheduling difficulties related to the 
different time zones. In summary, approximately 67 vocational students 
are affected by the time zone differences.
    With regard to recreation, the original Daviess County petition 
stated that the largest metropolitan area where its citizens transact 
business is Evansville. The original Dubois County petition noted that 
``major recreational events'' would be in either the Eastern or Central 
Time Zones. The original Knox County petition pointed out that 
residents who leave the community for recreation go to Illinois, or 
Gibson or Vanderburgh Counties, all in the Central Time Zone. The 
original Martin County petition listed Daviess, Dubois, Knox, and 
Vanderburgh Counties as the primary recreational outlets for its 
citizens. The original Pike County petition states that ``by far the 
majority of any entertainment available to the citizens of Pike is 
located in Evansville.''
    The Joint Petition notes, ``Recreational facilities are distributed 
fairly evenly throughout the Petitioning Counties,'' and that 
``residents therefore typically do not have to cross time zones to 
participate in a sporting activity.'' The Joint Petition specifically 
refers to a variety of sporting events and opportunities for golfers, 
boaters, tennis players, and fishers. On the other hand, the Joint 
Petition states that if residents want to go to a college athletic 
event at one of the State's three major universities, they must cross 
into the Eastern Time Zone.
    DOT requested comments from the Petitioning Counties on time zone 
change as it relates to recreation and tourism surrounding the Holiday 
World & Splashin' Safari amusement park in Spencer County because of 
strong economic ties between several of the Petitioning Counties and 
Spencer and Perry Counties, with its 1450 seasonal employees many who 
come from the Petitioning Counties, and its nearly 900,000 visitors a 
year. In the Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties 
state that, ``Due to its lengthy hours of operation, Holiday World will 
not be negatively impacted if the Petitioning Counties move to Eastern 
Time.'' Rather, Holiday World stands to benefit, ``as visitors from 
Petitioning Counties might arrive earlier in the day due to their being 
an hour ahead.'' The Second Supplemental Response did not provide a 
source for these assertions.
    In the Second Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties 
identify the two other attractions in the region: the French Lick 
Casino and Resort, located in Orange County, in the Eastern Time Zone, 
and Patoka Lakes located in Dubois, Orange, and Crawford Counties, in 
both the Eastern and Central Time Zones. In the Third Supplemental 
Response, the Petitioning Counties provide more detailed information 
about these attractions. The French Lick Casino re-opened at the end of 
October, 2006 and employs 1400 workers. From its opening through March 
2007, there had been 520,367 visitors. The fishing tournaments at 
Patoka Lakes attract between 750,000 and 1,000,000 visitors. The Third 
Supplemental Response adds an attraction not mentioned in the Joint 
Petition or the Second Supplemental Response, Paoli Peaks, a ski resort 
in Orange County that attracts 100,000 visitors annually.
    With regard to health care, the original individual petitions for 
Dubois County stated that the citizens of their counties receive 
ordinary medical care within their respective county. For more 
specialized medical care, the original Dubois County petition stated 
that its citizens go to Evansville, Indianapolis, and Louisville. The 
original Knox County petition pointed out that residents who leave the 
community for health care go to Illinois, or Gibson or Vanderburgh 
Counties, all in the Central Time Zone. The original Martin County 
petition stated that a vast majority of its residents utilize hospitals 
in Daviess, Dubois, and Knox Counties. The original Martin County 
petition cites Evansville as the closest location with a major medical 
center. The original petitions for Daviess and Pike Counties did not 
mention where its citizens receive medical care.
    The Joint Petition includes a chart indicating that, with the 
exception of Lawrence County Memorial in Lawrence County, Indiana, all 
of the hospitals located closest to the Petitioning Counties are 
currently located in the Central Time Zone. The Joint Petition also 
states that the best and closest specialty hospitals are located in 
Indianapolis and Louisville, both in the Eastern Time Zone, and that 
``there are no comparable hospitals with world-renowned specialists and 
facilities located in the Petitioning Counties.'' In the Second 
Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties correct the location of 
the Lawrence County Memorial Hospital, which is located in Lawrence, 
Illinois, in the Central Time Zone. In the Third Supplemental Response, 
the Petitioning Counties attempt to provide some justification for its 
assertions that patients from the Petitioning Counties seek treatment 
in Indianapolis or Louisville. The Third Supplemental Response refers 
to a report from the Daviess County Hospital that indicates that the 
majority of patients were transferred to another Petitioning County and 
more to a Central Time Zone hospital than to a hospital in the Eastern 
Time Zone. The Third Supplemental Response states, ``For many of the 
Petitioning Counties (Daviess, Knox, and Martin) the majority of 
transfers outside of the Petitioning Counties went to hospitals on 
Eastern Time;'' however, it does not provide a reference to support 
this assertion.
    The Joint Petition does not mention any specific information 
regarding religious worship, but concludes that, based on the numerous 
places of worship in each Petitioning County, the majority of people 
worship in or near the same county in which they live.
    The Petitioning Counties have submitted sufficient information 
concerning the recreation aspect of the convenience of commerce 
standard to justify proposing to change in the time zone boundary based 
on sporting activities and area attractions. The Petitioning Counties 
have also submitted sufficient information concerning the education 
aspect of the convenience of commerce standard to justify proposing to 
change the time zone boundary based on after school activities and 
higher education. The Petitioning Counties have not submitted 
sufficient information concerning the religious observance or health 
care aspect of the convenience of commerce standard to justify 
proposing to change the time zone boundary. DOT questions the number of 
residents of the Petitioning Counties that go to the more specialized 
hospitals located in the Eastern Time Zone, especially in light of the 
fact that, if the petition were granted, there would be more local 
hospitals in a different time zone than the current alignment. DOT 
seeks

[[Page 39602]]

comment on the information submitted by the Petitioning Counties and 
requests any additional information that would aid in determining 
whether a change in the time zone for the Petitioning Counties would 
serve the convenience of commerce.

Regional Connections

    In the original rulemaking proceeding to change time zone 
boundaries from the Eastern Time Zone to the Central Time Zone, the 
Petitioning Counties and commenters advocated for a move by referring 
to their ties to other Indiana counties currently in the Central Time 
Zone. Many referred to data from STATS Indiana, including the Indiana 
Annual Commuting Trends Profile, based on Indiana IT 40 returns. 
Commenters who supported the change to Central Time also referred to 
data from the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, the Indiana 
Department of Workforce Development, the Indiana Department of 
Transportation, the Indiana Department of Education, and Designated 
Market Areas as defined by Nielsen Media Research for use in television 
ratings.
    DOT carefully reviewed and used this data when it reached its prior 
decision to change the time zone boundaries of the Petitioning Counties 
to the Central Time Zone. Recognizing the importance of regional 
connections, the benefits of similar time zones, and regional ties 
among counties, DOT stated in the January 2006 final rule, ``While 
Daviess, Dubois, Knox, Martin, and Perry border other Indiana counties 
in the Eastern Time Zone, their ties to those counties are not as 
strong as they are to each other and to other counties to their south, 
which are currently in the Central Time Zone. Along with Pike, these 
counties are located in the same workforce, commerce, transportation, 
and education regions designated by Indiana.'' DOT also noted that, in 
general, remaining in the same time zone and maintaining their regional 
ties better position counties to realize advantages in economic, 
cultural, social, and civic activities, thereby serving the convenience 
of commerce.
    Contrary to the original statements about ties to the Central Time 
Zone and DOT's determination, the Joint Petition now asserts ties to 
the Eastern Time Zone. The Joint Petition concludes, ``The Petitioning 
Counties are on the periphery of the regional, Evansville-based economy 
and have stronger economic and cultural connections to each other and 
the interior counties currently on Eastern Time than they do with the 
relatively few counties at the southern tip of Indiana on Central 
Time.''
    While the Joint Petition refers to ties to the Eastern Time Zone, 
the Joint Petition also mentions the United States Bureau of Economic 
Analysis (BEA) in its discussion of Martin County. It uses the BEA 
information to explain the major elements of the community's economy.
    According to BEA's Web site, ``BEA produces economic account 
statistics that enable government and business decision-makers, 
researchers, and the American public to follow and understand the 
performance of the Nation's economy * * * BEA's economic areas define 
the relevant regional markets surrounding metropolitan or micropolitan 
statistical areas. They consist of one or more economic nodes--
metropolitan or micropolitan statistical areas that serve as regional 
centers of economic activity--and the surrounding counties that are 
economically related to the nodes.'' (Emphasis added.). The economic 
areas are based on commuting patterns, statistical areas, and on 
newspaper circulation data. With the exception of Knox County, the 
Petitioning Counties are in BEA economic area 54 (the Evansville, KY 
area), along with other counties that are in the Central Time Zone. 
Knox County, on the other hand, is in a BEA economic area with counties 
in both the Central and Eastern Time Zones.
    DOT asked the Petitioning Counties to address these differences in 
the Joint Petition's assertions of connections to the Eastern Time Zone 
and the BEA data. Despite the BEA classification, in their Second 
Supplemental Response, the Petitioning Counties now insist that their 
strongest economic connections are among themselves and the surrounding 
counties on Eastern Time rather than to the other counties in BEA 
economic area 54. The Second Supplemental Response states, ``A better 
assessment of regional connectivity can be seen on the State and local 
level.'' The Second Supplemental Response notes that State and local 
economic development agencies may consider commuter patterns and also 
``look to the types of businesses in the area upon which communities 
rely to sustain growth'' as well as funding, and transportation 
opportunities. More specifically, the Second Supplemental response 
refers to the Indiana Association of Regional Councils (IARC), an 
organization that supports regional planning efforts that prioritize 
and categorize local community and economic development needs and 
projects as well as the transportation and special needs of the 
communities. Under IARC, none of the Petitioning Counties considered to 
be within the Evansville region and are connected with other 
Petitioning Counties and counties.
    The Second Supplemental Response also refers to other connections 
to counties already on Eastern Time. Under Region 15 Economic Area, 
Dubois and Pike Counties are paired with Orange and Crawford Counties 
in the Eastern Time Zone. The Second Supplemental Response also notes 
that Daviess, Knox, and Martin Counties are served by the Southern 
Indiana Development Commission (SIDC) along with two other counties 
currently in the Eastern Time Zone. According to the Second 
Supplemental Response, SIDC counties have collaborated on Federal and 
State grant applications. As an example of these collaborative efforts, 
the Second Supplemental Response refers to a demand-based rural transit 
system funded by a Federal grant. The Second Supplemental Response 
asserts that placing all participating counties in the same time zone 
will preserve the cohesiveness and viability of the system.
    Another regional economic development project referenced in the 
Second Supplemental Response is Crane Diversification, which is 
composed of six counties, including Daviess and Martin Counties and 
four others counties which are on Eastern Time. According to the Second 
Supplemental Response, the goal of Crane Diversification ``is to 
develop an economic diversification plan that will result in an orderly 
transition of this block of counties * * * from economic dependence on 
national defense spending to a more balanced local economy with a mix 
of private and public sector employment opportunities for the area's 
citizens.'' The Petitioning Counties believe that projects such as 
Crane Diversification would be negatively impacted by the current time 
zone disparity, affecting planning, integration, and strategic 
development. The Second Supplemental Response also mentions other 
projects that it says define the economic region in terms of counties 
tied to each other through potential business development. These 
include the Indiana Uplands Growth Partnership, developed under a 
gaming statute; Economic Growth Region 8; and West Gate @ Crane 
Technology Park. The Third Supplemental Response explains these in 
greater detail.
    According to the Third Supplemental Response, the Indiana Upland 
Growth Partnership concerns the French Lick Casino and arose under 
State legislation.

[[Page 39603]]

The Third Supplemental Response states that ``a portion of the 
admission taxes at the casino will go towards supporting regional 
economic activity for Orange County (Eastern) and the five counties 
surrounding Orange.'' While the Third Supplemental response refers to 
five counties, it only lists four and states, ``These counties have 
worked together to develop a strategic plan for the economic 
development of the six county region.'' With regard to West Gate @ 
Crane Technology Park, the Third Supplemental Response notes that it 
was certified by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation and 
developed by county and economic development commissions from Daviess 
(Central), Martin (Central), and Greene (Eastern) counties. The Third 
Supplemental Response states, ``The state-of-the-art facilities in 
development are expected to serve major commercial technology companies 
associated with the $2 billion NSWC Crane military technical center. 
Facilities are also being designed for academic and training 
operations.'' As for Economic Growth Region 8, the Third Supplemental 
Response explains that the region was designated by the Indiana 
Department of Workforce Development ``to promote economic growth and 
serve as a means for implementing the State's Strategic Plan 
Initiative.''
    The Third Supplemental Response concludes that failing to change 
the time zone boundary to the Eastern Time Zone and ``cement the 
connection between the Petitioning Counties and the State Capitol, and 
between a large portion of the business in the Petitioning Counties and 
their customer base, is likely to have a significantly negative impact 
on the already struggling economies of this region.''
    The Petitioning Counties' references to Region 15 Economic Area and 
Economic Growth Region 8 are also addressed in letters from the Indiana 
Economic Development Corporation and the Indiana Department of 
Workforce Development. As noted above, these organizations explained 
that they established their respective State regions based on their 
ability to deliver services. They did not establish regions based on 
time zones or ``convenience of commerce.'' Nevertheless, the 
Petitioning Counties have submitted sufficient information concerning 
the regional connections and ties to the Eastern Time Zone to justify 
proposing to change the time zone. DOT seeks comment on the information 
submitted by the Petitioning Counties and requests any additional 
information concerning regional connections that would aid in 
determining whether changing the time zone for these counties would 
serve the convenience of commerce.

Request for Comments

    To aid us in our consideration of whether a time zone change would 
be ``for the convenience of commerce,'' we ask for comments on the 
impact on commerce of a change in the time zone and whether a new time 
zone would improve the convenience of commerce. The comments should 
address the impact on such things as economic, cultural, social, and 
civic activities and how time zone changes affect businesses, 
communication, transportation, and education. The comments should be as 
detailed as possible, providing the basis of the information including 
factual data or surveys. For example, with regard to major bus, rail, 
and air transportation, information such as the average time it takes 
for a county resident to travel to a transportation terminal or the 
average distance to the terminal for a county resident would be useful. 
With regard to the impact of the time zone on education, if a school 
district crosses county lines, the number of students in each county in 
that district would be helpful. Information on school activities such 
as sporting events or academic competitions that take place in other 
counties or locations that are not on the same time zone as the school 
district would also be useful. Similar information on community 
colleges could also be beneficial. Finally, we would appreciate 
information on how the different time zones affect the students and the 
schools.
    We specifically invite comment from neighboring Indiana counties 
and counties in other States that may also be impacted by changing the 
Petitioning Counties' time zone boundary.
    Although the Petitioning Counties have submitted sufficient 
information to begin the rulemaking process, the decision whether 
actually to make the change will also consider information submitted in 
writing to the docket. Persons supporting or opposing the change should 
not assume that the change will be made merely because DOT is making 
the proposal. DOT here issues no opinion on the ultimate merits of the 
Petitioning Counties' request. We note that the Petitioning Counties 
and their residents have had only a short time to experience the 
effects of changing from Eastern to Central Time and now the 
Petitioning Counties request to change back again. We also understand 
that this proposal may have an impact on surrounding Counties, 
particularly Perry County which changed time zone boundaries at the 
same time as the Petitioning Counties. This may result in many comments 
to the docket. Our decision in the final rule will be made on the basis 
of information and comments developed during the entire rulemaking 
proceeding. In our experience, time zone boundary changes can be 
extremely disruptive to a community and, therefore, should not be made 
without careful consideration. At the close of the comment period, we 
will analyze the comments submitted and decide whether to withdraw the 
proposal (and deny the Joint Petition) or issue a final rule.

Comment Period

    We are providing 30 days for public comments in this proceeding. 
Although we normally provide 60 days for public comments on proposed 
rules, we believe that 30 days is an adequate public comment period in 
this instance. It is important to resolve this rulemaking expeditiously 
so that we can provide ample notice if a change to the Petitioning 
Counties' time zone boundaries is adopted. Since the introduction and 
passage of the Indiana Act in 2005 and through DOT's time zone 
regulatory proceeding and review of three Supplemental Responses, the 
time zone boundary issue has been actively discussed and analyzed. In 
this regard, we expect that 30 days is adequate time to submit the 
necessary data, which is based on currently available information.

Regulatory Analysis and Notices

    This proposed rule is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under 
section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 and does not require an 
assessment of potential costs and benefits under section 6(a)(3) of 
that Order. It has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and 
Budget under that Order. It is not ``significant'' under the regulatory 
policies and procedures of the Department of Transportation (44 FR 
11040; February 26, 1979). We expect the economic impact of this 
proposed rule to be so minimal that a full Regulatory Evaluation under 
paragraph 10e of the regulatory policies and procedures of DOT is 
unnecessary. The rule primarily affects the convenience of individuals 
in scheduling activities. By itself, it imposes no direct costs. Its 
impact is localized in nature.

Small Entities

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), we 
considered whether this proposed rule would have a significant economic 
impact on a

[[Page 39604]]

substantial number of small entities. The term ``small entities'' 
comprises small businesses, not-for-profit organizations that are 
independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their fields, 
and governmental jurisdictions with populations of less than 50,000. 
This proposal, if adopted, would primarily affect individuals and their 
scheduling of activities. Although it would affect some small 
businesses, not-for-profits and, perhaps, a number of small 
governmental jurisdictions, it would not be a substantial number. In 
addition, the change should have little, if any, economic impact.
    Therefore, I certify under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that this proposed rule 
would not, if adopted, have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. If you think that your business, 
organization, or governmental jurisdiction qualifies as a small entity 
and that this rule would have a significant economic impact on it, 
please submit a comment to the Docket Management Facility at the 
address under ADDRESSES. In your comment, explain why you think it 
qualifies and how and to what degree this rule would economically 
affect it.
    Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement 
Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), we want to assist small 
entities in understanding this proposed rule so that they can better 
evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking. If the 
rule would affect your small business, organization, or governmental 
jurisdiction and you have questions concerning its provisions or 
options for compliance, please call Judith Kaleta at (202) 366-9315.

Collection of Information

    This proposed rule would call for no new collection of information 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520).

Federalism

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under E.O. 12612 and have 
determined that this rule does not have sufficient implications for 
federalism to warrant the preparation of a Federalism Assessment.

Unfunded Mandates

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538) and 
E.O. 12875, Enhancing the Intergovernmental Partnership, (58 FR 58093; 
October 28, 1993) govern the issuance of Federal regulations that 
impose unfunded mandates. An unfunded mandate is a regulation that 
requires a State, local, or tribal government or the private sector to 
incur direct costs without the Federal Government's having first 
provided the funds to pay those costs. This proposed rule would not 
impose an unfunded mandate.

Taking of Private Property

    This proposed rule would not result in a taking of private property 
or otherwise have taking implications under E.O. 12630, Governmental 
Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property 
Rights.

Civil Justice Reform

    This proposed rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 
3(b)(2) of E.O. 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, 
eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

Protection of Children

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under E.O. 13045, Protection of 
Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks. This rule is 
not an economically significant rule and does not concern an 
environmental risk to health or risk to safety that may 
disproportionately affect children.

Environment

    This rulemaking is not a major Federal action significantly 
affecting the quality of the human environment under the National 
Environmental Policy Act and, therefore, an environmental impact 
statement is not required.

Privacy Act

    Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments 
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's 
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 70; Pages 19477-78) or you may visit 
http://dms.dot.gov.

List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 71

    Time zones.

    For the reasons discussed above, the Office of the Secretary 
proposes to amend Title 49 part 71 as follows:
    1. The authority citation for part 71 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: Secs. 1-4, 40 Stat. 450, as amended; sec. 1, 41 Stat. 
1446, as amended; secs. 2-7, 80 Stat. 107, as amended; 100 Stat. 
764; Act of Mar. 19, 1918, as amended by the Uniform Time Act of 
1966 and Pub. L. 97-449, 15 U.S.C. 260-267; Pub. L. 99-359; Pub. L. 
106-564, 15 U.S.C. 263, 114 Stat. 2811; 49 CFR 1.59(a).

    2. Paragraph (b) of Sec.  71.5 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  71.5  Boundary line between eastern and central zones.

* * * * *
    (b) Indiana-Illinois. From the junction of the western boundary of 
the State of Michigan with the northern boundary of the State of 
Indiana easterly along the northern boundary of the State of Indiana to 
the east line of LaPorte County; thence southerly along the east line 
of LaPorte County to the north line of Starke County; thence east along 
the north line of Starke County to the west line of Marshall County; 
thence south along the west line of Marshall County; thence west along 
the north line of Pulaski County to the east line of Jasper County; 
thence south along the east line of Jasper County to the south line of 
Jasper County; thence west along the south lines of Jasper and Newton 
Counties to the western boundary of the State of Indiana; thence south 
along the western boundary of the State of Indiana to the north line of 
Gibson County; thence easterly and northerly along the north line of 
Gibson County to the west line of Pike County; thence south along the 
west line of Pike County to the north line of Warrick County; thence 
east along the north line of Warrick and Spencer Counties to the west 
line of Perry County; thence easterly and southerly along the north and 
east line of Perry County to the Indiana-Kentucky boundary.
* * * * *

    Issued in Washington, DC on July 16, 2007.
D.J. Gribbin,
General Counsel.
[FR Doc. 07-3516 Filed 7-16-07; 12:13 pm]
BILLING CODE 4910-9X-P