[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 239 (Wednesday, December 12, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 73911-73912]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-29941]



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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Parts 117, 119 and 121

[Docket No. FAA-2009-1093]
RIN 2120-AJ58


Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Availability of Initial Supplemental Regulatory Impact 
Analysis.

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SUMMARY: The FAA is issuing an Initial Supplemental Regulatory Impact 
Analysis of its final rule amending its existing flight, duty and rest 
regulations applicable to certain certificate holders and their 
flightcrew members. That document may be found in the docket listed 
above. The Initial Supplemental Regulatory Impact Analysis serves to 
provide more detail on the potential impacts the final rule would have 
on cargo-only operations. In addition, the Initial Supplemental 
Regulatory Impact Analysis provides expanded discussion of the 
methodology and information sources used in the original Regulatory 
Impact Analysis, corrects some reporting of results and minor 
calculation errors present in that document, and presents sensitivity 
analysis on key assumptions used in the analysis.

DATES: Comments are due February 11, 2013.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical issues: Nan 
Shellabarger, Aviation Policy and Plans (APO-1), Federal Aviation 
Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; 
telephone (202) 267-3274; email: nan.shellabarger@faa.gov. For legal 
issues: Rebecca MacPherson, Office of the Chief Counsel, International 
Law, Legislation, and Regulations Division (AGC-200), Federal Aviation 
Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; 
telephone (202) 267-3073; email: rebecca.macpherson@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On December 21, 2011, the Federal Aviation 
Administration (FAA) issued a final rule that was published in the 
Federal Register as Flight Crew Member Duty and Rest Requirements on 
January 4, 2012. 77 FR 330. The regulations, which are limited to 
passenger operations conducted under 14 CFR part 121 (part 121), become 
effective on January 4, 2014. On December 21, 2011, the FAA also issued 
a Regulatory Impact Analysis (original RIA) dated November 18, 2011 
(FAA-2009-1093-2477). The original RIA provides the basis for the FAA's 
decision to (1) promulgate the final rule establishing new flight, duty 
and rest requirements for flight crews in passenger operations; and (2) 
exclude flight crews in cargo-only operations from the new mandatory 
requirements. While cargo-only operations are not required to meet the 
new regulations, the rule permits these operators to opt in to the rule 
if they so choose.
    On December 22, 2011 the Independent Pilots Association (IPA) filed 
a timely petition for review. During the course of reviewing the 
administrative record for the purpose of preparing the government's 
brief, the FAA discovered errors in the original RIA that supports the 
final rule. The errors were associated with the scope of costs related 
to the implementation of the regulations for cargo-only operations. 
These errors appeared to be of a sufficient amount that the FAA 
concluded it was prudent to review the portion of the cost-benefit 
analysis related to cargo-only operations and allow interested parties 
an opportunity to comment on the corrected analysis.
    On May 17, 2012, the FAA asked the United States Court of Appeals 
for the District of Columbia Circuit to suspend the litigation of the 
final rule while the agency corrected the inadvertent errors it had 
discovered. The court granted the FAA's motion on June 8, 2012. While 
the passenger operations rule is not at issue in the court proceedings, 
the FAA, in an abundance of caution, decided to have that portion of 
the original RIA reevaluated as well. The FAA contracted with the John 
A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center to review the original 
RIA for accuracy, correct any errors identified, and prepare a 
supplemental regulatory evaluation laying out the revised analysis. 
This Initial Supplemental RIA is the product of that review.
    The FAA does not believe that it is statutorily foreclosed from 
issuing an RIA and considering the costs and benefits of the flight, 
duty, and rest rule. Section 212 of Public Law 111-216 contains a list 
of factors that Congress wanted the FAA to consider as part of this 
rulemaking. There is no indication in the statutory text of this 
section that this list was intended to be exhaustive. However, in its 
motion to the Court of Appeals, the FAA stated that it would provide 
petitioner with an opportunity to present its view that Public Law 111-
216 prohibits the FAA from conducting a cost-benefit analysis. 
Accordingly, the FAA seeks comment on whether Public Law 111-216 
permits the FAA to conduct a cost-benefit analysis.
    Turning to the Initial Supplemental RIA, while this Initial 
Supplemental RIA largely mirrors the original RIA in both content and 
organizational structure, it does not re-evaluate the policy decisions 
behind the FAA's decision to issue a final rule implementing new 
flight, duty and rest requirements for part 121 carriers engaged in 
passenger operations. Rather, this Initial Supplemental RIA provides 
expanded discussion of the methodology and information sources used in 
the rulemaking analysis, corrects reporting and calculation errors 
identified in the original RIA, and presents sensitivity analysis on 
key assumptions used in the analysis.\1\ A new Appendix B contains the 
results of those sensitivity analyses while Appendix C contains 
detailed data tables, which are summarized in the body of this Initial 
Supplemental RIA. The Initial Supplemental RIA results in data that 
provides greater justification for the exclusion of cargo operations 
from the final rule, and continues to provide justification for the 
final rule on passenger operations. As a result, the FAA has determined 
that no revisions to the final rule on either cargo or passenger 
operations is warranted.
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    \1\ Wherever possible, this Initial Supplemental RIA relies on 
the same data used for the original RIA. In some cases, new 
estimates were developed and more recent data sources were used.
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    In the original RIA, the portion of scheduling costs related to 
cargo-only operations of air carriers that conduct both passenger and 
cargo-only operations (mixed operations carriers) were inadvertently 
excluded from the reported costs of extending the final rule to cargo-
only operations. This Initial Supplemental RIA fixes that omission and 
that revision has significantly increased the estimates of the stated 
costs of extending the final rule to cargo-only operations. Due to 
inclusion of impacts on cargo-only operations, a few air carriers were 
reclassified for ease of explication.
    Table 1 and Table 2 summarize the differences between the original 
RIA and the Initial Supplemental RIA.

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              Table 1--Passenger Operations Nominal Costs and Benefits Over 12-Year Analysis Period
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                                                         Original RIA      Supplemental RIA       Difference
                                                          (millions)          (millions)          (millions)
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Total Benefits--Base Case...........................                $376                $401                 $25
Total Benefits--High case...........................                 716                 757                  41
Total Costs.........................................                 390                 457                  67
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                   Table 2--Cargo-Only Nominal Costs and Benefits Over 12-Year Analysis Period
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                                                         Original RIA      Supplemental RIA       Difference
                                                          (millions)          (millions)          (millions)
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Total Benefits--Base Case..........................            ** $20.35                  $5
Total Benefits--High Case..........................             ** 32.55                  31
Total Costs........................................               306                    550                $244
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** The FAA did not detail potential benefits to cargo-only operations in the original RIA. Rather, the FAA
  assumed that benefits associated with averting a single catastrophic accident involving a cargo plane would
  range between $20.35 million and $32.55 million.

Comments Invited

    The FAA invites interested persons to review the Initial 
Supplemental RIA and submit written comments, data, or views. The most 
helpful comments reference a specific portion of the Initial 
Supplemental RIA, explain the reason for any recommended change, and 
include supporting data. To ensure the docket does not contain 
duplicate comments, please send only one copy of written comments, or 
if filing comments electronically, please submit your comments only one 
time.
    The FAA will file in the docket all comments we receive, as well as 
a report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel 
concerning the Initial Supplemental RIA. Before issuing the Final 
Supplemental RIA, the agency will consider all comments we receive on 
or before the closing date for comments. It will consider comments 
filed after the comment period has closed if it is possible to do so 
without incurring expense or delay. The FAA may change the Final 
Supplemental RIA in light of the comments we receive.

Proprietary or Confidential Business Information

    Do not file in the docket information that you consider to be 
proprietary or confidential business information. Send or deliver this 
information directly to the legal contact person identified in the FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document. You must mark the 
information that you consider proprietary or confidential. If you send 
the information on a disk or CD ROM, mark the outside of the disk or CD 
ROM and also identify electronically within the disk or CD ROM the 
specific information that is proprietary or confidential.
    Under 14 CFR 11.35(b), when the FAA is aware of proprietary 
information filed with a comment, the agency does not place it in the 
docket. It is held in a separate file to which the public does not have 
access, and a note is placed in the docket that the agency has received 
it. If the agency receives a request to examine or copy this 
information, it treats it as any other request under the Freedom of 
Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552). The FAA processes such a request under 
the DOT procedures found in 49 CFR part 7.

Availability of Rulemaking Documents

    An electronic copy of rulemaking documents may be obtained using 
the Internet by--
    1. Searching the Federal eRulemaking Portal (http://www.regulations.gov);
    2. Visiting the FAA's Regulations and Policies Web page at http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/; or
    3. Accessing the Government Printing Office's Web page at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/index.html.
    Alternatively, a copy may be requested directly from the FAA by 
sending a request to the Federal Aviation Administration, Office of 
Rulemaking, ARM-1, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591, 
or by calling (202) 267-9680. Make sure to identify the docket number 
or notice number of this rulemaking.
    All documents the FAA considered in developing the underlying final 
rule, Flight Crew Member Duty and Rest Requirements and this Initial 
Supplemental RIA, including economic analyses and technical reports, 
are located in the docket for this rulemaking and may be viewed on the 
internet through the Federal eRulemaking Portal referenced in paragraph 
(1).

    Issued on: December 6, 2012.
Rebecca MacPherson,
Assistant Chief Counsel for International Law, Legislation and 
Regulations.
[FR Doc. 2012-29941 Filed 12-7-12; 4:15 pm]
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