Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.
Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).
This action proposes to remove one Jet Route, J-105, and amend four VHF Omnidirectional Range (VOR) Federal airways, V-15, V-63, V-272, and V-583, in the vicinity of McAlester, OK. The modifications are necessary due to the planned decommissioning of the VOR portion of the McAlester, OK, VOR/Tactical Air Navigation (VORTAC) navigation aid (NAVAID), which provides navigation guidance for portions of the affected air traffic service (ATS) routes. The McAlester VOR is being decommissioned as part of the FAA's VOR Minimum Operational Network (MON) program.
Comments must be received on or before March 6, 2020.
Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone: (800) 647-5527, or (202) 366-9826. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2020-0010; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASW-18 at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the internet at https://www.regulations.gov.
FAA Order 7400.11D, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed online at https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. For further information, you can contact the Rules and Regulations Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of FAA Order 7400.11D at NARA, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or go to https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Colby Abbott, Rules and Regulations Group, Office of Policy, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267-8783.
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Authority for This Rulemaking
The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of the airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would modify the route structure as necessary to preserve the safe and efficient flow of air traffic within the National Airspace System.Start Printed Page 3302
Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal.
Communications should identify both docket numbers (FAA Docket No. FAA-2020-0010; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASW-18) and be submitted in triplicate to the Docket Management Facility (see ADDRESSES section for address and phone number). You may also submit comments through the internet at https://www.regulations.gov.
Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this action must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to FAA Docket No. FAA-2020-0010; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASW-18.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.
All communications received on or before the specified comment closing date will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this action may be changed in light of comments received. All comments submitted will be available for examination in the public docket both before and after the comment closing date. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the docket.
Availability of NPRMs
An electronic copy of this document may be downloaded through the internet at https://www.regulations.gov. Recently published rulemaking documents can also be accessed through the FAA's web page at https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/airspace_amendments/.
You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office (see ADDRESSES section for address and phone number) between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. An informal docket may also be examined during normal business hours at the office of the Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, Federal Aviation Administration, 10101 Hillwood Blvd., Fort Worth, TX 76177.
Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference
This document proposes to amend FAA Order 7400.11D, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 8, 2019, and effective September 15, 2019. FAA Order 7400.11D is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11D lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.
The FAA is planning decommissioning activities for the VOR portion of the McAlester, OK, VORTAC in July, 2020. McAlester VOR is one of the candidate VORs identified for discontinuance by the FAA's VOR MON program and listed in the final policy statement notice, “Provision of Navigation Services for the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) Transition to Performance-Based Navigation (PBN) (Plan for Establishing a VOR Minimum Operational Network),” published in the Federal Register of July 26, 2016 (81 FR 48694), Docket No. FAA-2011-1082. Although the VOR portion of the McAlester, OK, VORTAC NAVAID is planned for decommissioning, the co-located Distance Measuring Equipment (DME) is being retained. The ATS routes affected by the planned McAlester VOR decommissioning are Jet Route J-105 and VOR Federal airways V-15, V-63, V-272, and V-583.
With the planned decommissioning of the McAlester VOR, the remaining ground-based NAVAID coverage in the area is insufficient to enable the continuity of the effected ATS routes. As such, proposed modifications to the affected Jet Route and VOR Federal Airways would result in removal of the jet route and gaps in the airways. To overcome the jet route removal and airway gaps, instrument flight rules (IFR) traffic could use adjacent Jet Routes, including J-26, J-35, J-87, J-89, J-101, and J-181, or VOR Federal airways, including V-13, V-161, V-210, V-315, V-532, and V-573, to circumnavigate the affected area. Additionally, IFR traffic could file point to point through the affected area using the existing airway fixes that will remain in place, or receive air traffic control (ATC) radar vectors through the area. Visual flight rules pilots who elect to navigate via the airways through the affected area could also take advantage of the adjacent VOR Federal airways or ATC services listed previously.
The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 by removing Jet Route J-105 and modifying VOR Federal Airways V-15, V-63, V-272, and V-583. The planned decommissioning of the VOR portion of the McAlester, OK, VORTAC NAVAID has made this action necessary. The proposed Jet route and VOR Federal airway changes are outlined below.
J-105: J-105 currently extends between the Ranger, TX, VORTAC and the Badger, WI, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the jet route in its entirety.
V-15: V-15 currently extends between the Hobby, TX, VOR/DME and the Neosho, MO, VOR/DME; and between the Sioux City, IA, VORTAC and the Minot, ND, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the McAlester, OK, VORTAC between the Bonham, TX, VORTAC and the Okmulgee, OK, VOR/DME. Concurrent changes to other portions of the airway are being proposed in separate NPRMs. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-63: V-63 currently extends between the Bowie, TX, VORTAC and the Oshkosh, WI, VORTAC; and between the Wausau, WI, VORTAC and the Houghton, MI, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the McAlester, OK, VORTAC between the Texoma, OK, VOR/DME and the Razorback, AR, VORTAC. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-272: V-272 currently extends between the Dalhart, TX, VORTAC and the Fort Smith, AR, VORTAC. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the McAlester, OK, VORTAC between the Will Rogers, OK, VORTAC and the Fort Smith, AR, VORTAC. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-583: V-583 currently extends between the Centex, TX, VORTAC and the McAlester, OK, VORTAC. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the McAlester, OK, VORTAC between the Paris, TX, VOR/DME and the McAlester, OK, VORTAC. Concurrent changes to other portions of the airway are being proposed in a separate NPRM. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.Start Printed Page 3303
All radials in the route descriptions below are unchanged and stated in True degrees.
Jet Routes are published in paragraph 2004 and VOR Federal airways are published in paragraph 6010(a) of FAA Order 7400.11D dated August 8, 2019, and effective September 15, 2019, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The Jet Route and VOR Federal airways listed in this document would be subsequently published in the Order.
FAA Order 7400.11, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.
Regulatory Notices and Analyses
The FAA has determined that this proposed regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. It, therefore: (1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a “significant rule” under Department of Transportation (DOT) Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. Since this is a routine matter that will only affect air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this proposed rule, when promulgated, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.
This proposal will be subject to an environmental analysis in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures” prior to any FAA final regulatory action.
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- Incorporation by reference
- Navigation (air)
The Proposed Amendment
In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR part 71 as follows:
PART 71—DESIGNATION OF CLASS A, B, C, D, AND E AIRSPACE AREAS; AIR TRAFFIC SERVICE ROUTES; AND REPORTING POINTS
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1. The authority citation for part 71 continues to read as follows: End Amendment Part
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2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.11D, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 8, 2019 and effective September 15, 2019, is amended as follows:End Amendment Part
Paragraph 2004 Jet Routes.
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Paragraph 6010(a) Domestic VOR Federal Airways.
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From Hobby, TX; Navasota, TX; College Station, TX; Waco, TX; Cedar Creek, TX; to Bonham, TX. From Okmulgee, OK; to Neosho, MO. From Sioux City, IA; INT Sioux City 340° and Sioux Falls, SD, 169° radials; Sioux Falls; Huron, SD; Aberdeen, SD; Bismarck, ND; to Minot, ND.
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From Bowie, TX; to Texoma, OK. From Razorback, AR; Springfield, MO; Hallsville, MO; Quincy, IL; Burlington, IA; Moline, IL; Davenport, IA; Rockford, IL; Janesville, WI; Badger, WI; to Oshkosh, WI. From Wausau, WI; Rhinelander, WI; to Houghton, MI. Excluding that airspace at and above 10,000 feet MSL from 5 NM north to 46 NM north of Quincy, IL, when the Howard West MOA is active.
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From Dalhart, TX; Borger, TX; Burns Flat, OK; to Will Rogers, OK.
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From Centex, TX; INT Centex 061° and College Station, TX, 273° radials; College Station; Leona, TX; Frankston, TX; Quitman, TX; to Paris, TX.
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Issued in Washington, DC, on January 7, 2020.
Rodger A. Dean Jr.,
Manager, Rules and Regulations Group.
[FR Doc. 2020-00547 Filed 1-17-20; 8:45 am]
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