Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.
Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).
This action proposes to amend VHF Omnidirectional Range (VOR) Federal airways V-6, V-30, V-58, V-119, and V-226 in the vicinity of Clarion, PA. The VOR Federal airway modifications are necessary due to the planned decommissioning of the VOR portion of the Clarion, PA, VOR/Distance Measuring Equipment (VOR/DME) navigation aid (NAVAID) which Start Printed Page 49325provides navigation guidance for portions of the affected ATS routes. The Clarion VOR is being decommissioned as part of the FAA's VOR Minimum Operational Network (MON) program.
Comments must be received on or before September 28, 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-2020-0709; Airspace Docket No. 20-AEA-2 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: email@example.com 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 (NAS).
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-2020-0709; Airspace Docket No. 20-AEA-2) 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-2020-0709; Airspace Docket No. 20-AEA-2.” 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 Clarion, PA, VOR/DME in February, 2021. The Clarion VOR is a candidate VOR 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 Clarion, PA, VOR/DME is planned for decommissioning, the co-located DME portion of the NAVAID is being retained to support Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) PBN flight procedure requirements.
The ATS route dependencies to the Clarion VOR/DME are VOR Federal airways V-6, V-30, V-58, V-119, and V-226. With the planned decommissioning of the VOR portion of the Clarion VOR/DME, the remaining ground-based NAVAID coverage in the areas is insufficient to enable the continuity of the affected VOR Federal airways. As such, proposed modifications to the affected VOR Federal airways would result in the existing gaps in V-6 and V-30 being extended and V-58, V-119, and V-226 being shortened.
To overcome the airway gaps and loss of airway segments, instrument flight rules (IFR) traffic could use adjacent ATS routes, including V-10, V-12, V-37, V-41, V-43, V-106, and V-115, or receive air traffic control (ATC) radar vectors to fly through or circumnavigate the affected area. IFR pilots equipped with area navigation (RNAV) PBN capabilities could also navigate point to point using the existing fixes that will Start Printed Page 49326remain in place to support continued operations though the affected area. Visual flight rules (VFR) pilots who elect to navigate via the airways through the affected area could also take advantage of the air traffic services previously listed.
Additionally, the V-58 description includes the exclusionary language, “The airspace within R-4105 is excluded during times of use.” That exclusion language was added to the airway description, effective March 10, 1988, and has been unchanged since (53 FR 2007; January 26, 1988). However, later that same year, the FAA published a rule in the Federal Register (53 FR 37544; September 27, 1988), effective October 20, 1988, that subdivided restricted area R-4105 into R-4105A and R-4105B. Then, in 2014, the FAA published a rule in the Federal Register (79 FR 61989; October 16, 2014), effective November 17, 2014, that removed R-4105A and R-4105B. Therefore, the restricted area exclusion language in the V-58 description is no longer required.
The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 by modifying VOR Federal airways V-6, V-30, V-58, V-119, and V-226. The planned decommissioning of the VOR portion of the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME NAVAID has made this action necessary. The proposed VOR Federal airway changes are outlined below.
V-6: V-6 currently extends between the Oakland, CA, VOR/DME and the DuPage, IL, VOR/DME; between the intersection of the Chicago Heights, IL, VOR/Tactical Air Navigation (VORTAC) 358° and Gipper, MI, VORTAC 271° radials (NILES fix) and the intersection of the Gipper, MI, VORTAC 092° and Litchfield, MI, VOR/DME 196° radials (MODEM fix); and between the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME and the La Guardia, NY, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME between the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME and the Philipsburg, PA, VORTAC. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-30: V-30 currently extends between the Badger, WI, VOR/DME and the Litchfield, MI, VOR/DME; and between the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME and the Solberg, NJ, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME between the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME and the Philipsburg, PA, VORTAC. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-58: V-58 currently extends between the intersection of the Franklin, PA, VOR 176° and Clarion, PA, VOR/DME 222° radials (GRACE fix) and the Williamsport, PA, VOR/DME; and between the intersection of the Sparta, NJ, VORTAC 018° and Kingston, NY, VOR/DME 270° radials (HELON fix) and the Nantucket, MA, VOR/DME. The airspace within R-4105 is excluded during times of use. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment between the Franklin, PA, VOR 176° and Clarion, PA, VOR/DME 222° radials (GRACE fix) and the Philipsburg, PA, VORTAC. Additionally, the restricted area exclusion language is proposed to be removed also. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-119: V-119 currently extends between the Henderson, WV, VORTAC and the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME between the Indian Head, PA, VORTAC and the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
V-226: V-226 currently extends between the intersection of the Franklin, PA, VOR 175° and Clarion, PA, VOR/DME 222° radials (GRACE fix) and the Stillwater, NJ, VOR/DME. The FAA proposes to remove the airway segment overlying the Clarion, PA, VOR/DME between the intersection of the Franklin, PA, VOR 175° and Clarion, PA, VOR/DME 222° radials (GRACE fix) and the Keating, PA, VORTAC. The unaffected portions of the existing airway would remain as charted.
The NAVAID radials in the VOR Federal airway descriptions below are unchanged and stated in True degrees.
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 ATS routes 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 6010(a) Domestic VOR Federal Airways.
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From Oakland, CA; INT Oakland 039° and Sacramento, CA, 212° radials; Sacramento; Squaw Valley, CA; Mustang, NV; Lovelock, NV; Battle Mountain, NV; INT Battle Mountain 062° and Wells, NV, 256° radials; Wells; 5 miles, 40 miles, 98 MSL, 85 MSL, Lucin, UT; 43 miles, 85 MSL, Ogden, UT; 11 miles, 50 miles, 105 MSL, Fort Bridger, WY; Rock Springs, WY; 20 miles, 39 miles, 95 MSL, Cherokee, WY; 39 miles, 27 miles, 95 MSL, Medicine Bow, WY; INT Medicine Bow 106° and Sidney, NE, 291° radials; Sidney; North Platte, NE; Grand Island, NE; Omaha, IA; Des Moines, IA; Iowa City, IA; Davenport, IA; INT Davenport 087° and DuPage, IL, 255° Start Printed Page 49327radials; to DuPage. From INT Chicago Heights, IL, 358° and Gipper, MI, 271° radials; Gipper; to INT Gipper 092° and Litchfield, MI, 196° radials. From Philipsburg, PA; Selinsgrove, PA; Allentown, PA; Solberg, NJ; INT Solberg 107° and Yardley, PA, 068° radials; INT Yardley 068° and La Guardia, NY, 213° radials; to La Guardia.
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From Badger, WI; INT Badger 102° and Pullman, MI, 303° radials; Pullman; to Litchfield, MI. From Philipsburg, PA; Selinsgrove, PA; East Texas, PA; INT East Texas 095° and Solberg, NJ, 264° radials; to Solberg.
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From Philipsburg, PA; to Williamsport, PA. From INT Sparta, NJ, 018° and Kingston, NY, 270° radials; Kingston; INT Kingston 095° and Hartford, CT, 269° radials; Hartford; Groton, CT; Sandy Point, RI; to Nantucket, MA.
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From Henderson, WV; Parkersburg, WV; INT Parkersburg 067° and Indian Head, PA, 254° radials; to Indian Head.
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From Keating, PA; Williamsport, PA; Wilkes-Barre, PA; to Stillwater, NJ.
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End Supplemental Information
Issued in Washington, DC, on August 7, 2020.
Scott M. Rosenbloom,
Acting Manager, Rules and Regulations Group.
[FR Doc. 2020-17598 Filed 8-12-20; 8:45 am]
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