Modification of the New York, NY, Class B Airspace Area; and Establishment of the New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East River Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area, 59902-59911 [E9-27539]

Download as PDF 59902 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations February 16, 2011, unless Congress extends the SISMBD Loan Program. All loan applications must be received at SBA no later than January 31, 2011. Loans must be paid in full by no later than February 16, 2013. Karen G. Mills, Administrator. [FR Doc. E9–27743 Filed 11–17–09; 11:15 am] Authority for This Rulemaking BILLING CODE 8025–01–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Parts 71 and 93 [Docket No.: FAA–2009–0837; Airspace Docket No. 09–AWA–2; Amendment Nos. 71–34, 93–94] RIN 2120–AJ59 Modification of the New York, NY, Class B Airspace Area; and Establishment of the New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East River Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule. erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES SUMMARY: This action makes a minor modification to the New York, NY, Class B airspace area by adjusting the floor of Class B airspace above a portion of the Hudson River to 1,300 feet above mean sea level (MSL). Additionally, this action establishes a Special Flight Rules Area (SFRA) over the Hudson River and East River to mandate certain pilot operating practices for flight within the Hudson River and East River Class B airspace Exclusions. The FAA is taking this action to enhance the safety of flight operations in the New York Class B airspace Exclusion areas. DATES: These amendments are effective 0901 UTC, November 19, 2009. The Director of the Federal Register approves the incorporation by reference of the 14 CFR part 71 amendment in this action under 1 CFR part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.9 and publication of conforming amendments. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical questions concerning this rule, contact Paul Gallant, Airspace and Rules Group, Office of System Operations Airspace and AIM, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267–8783. VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 For legal questions concerning this rule, contact Lorelei Peter, Office of the Chief Counsel, AGC–220, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone (202) 267–3134. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 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 this 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 section also provides for the FAA to prescribe air traffic regulations on the flight of aircraft (including regulations on safe altitudes) for: (1) Navigating, protecting, and identifying aircraft; (2) protecting individuals and property on the ground; (3) using the navigable airspace efficiently; and (4) preventing collision between aircraft, between aircraft and land or water vehicles, and between aircraft and airborne objects. Background On August 8, 2009, a midair collision occurred between a helicopter and a single-engine, fixed-wing aircraft operating in accordance with visual flight rules (VFR) over the Hudson River near Hoboken, New Jersey. The collision occurred beneath the New York Class B airspace area in an area commonly referred to as the Hudson River Class B airspace Exclusion. This accident prompted the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to examine the airspace configuration and pilot procedures that apply in the vicinity of the incident. The Hudson River Exclusion extends along the Hudson River between the vicinity of the George Washington Bridge, on the north, and the VerrazanoNarrows Bridge on the south. The Exclusion extends from the surface of the Hudson River up to the base of the overlying New York Class B airspace area. Currently, the floor of Class B airspace along the Hudson River varies between an altitude above 1,100 feet MSL and 1,500 feet MSL. The Exclusion effectively is a ‘‘cutout’’ from the New York Class B airspace area and permits PO 00000 Frm 00012 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 pilots to fly through the area without an air traffic control (ATC) clearance. The East River Class B Exclusion extends between the east and west banks of the East River from Governors Island to the north tip of Roosevelt Island. The exclusion extends from the surface of the river up to the base of the overlying Class B airspace. In light of the accident on August 11, 2009, the FAA issued Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) number 9/3952 strongly advising pilots to follow the longstanding recommended procedures for aircraft operating in the Hudson River and East River Exclusion areas. Specifically, these procedures request that aircraft operating in the area: • Not exceed 140 knots indicated airspeed; • Turn on anticollision, position, navigation and/or landing lights; and • Self announce on frequency 123.075 for the East River and 123.05 for the Hudson River. The NOTAM emphasized that the above recommendations do not relieve pilots of compliance with applicable regulations, including regulations concerning minimum safe altitudes and see-and-avoid responsibilities. On August 14, 2009, the FAA formed a task force to review current procedures for VFR flight operations in the New York City area. A goal of the review was to identify safety enhancements to flight operations in the Hudson River area. The task force developed eight recommendations which were included in the Review of New York Visual Flight Rules Airspace: Task Force Report, dated August 28, 2009. A copy of the report was placed in rulemaking docket for the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). Two of the eight recommendations (numbers one and five) require rulemaking action to: (1) Modify the floor of Class B airspace over a portion of the Hudson River; and (2) mandate compliance with the previously recommended procedures for flight in the Hudson River and East River Exclusion areas. Those two recommendations are the subject of this rulemaking action. Based on its preliminary findings, the NTSB issued a number of recommendations that are similar to those developed by the FAA task force. The NTSB recommendations are also available for viewing in the rulemaking docket for the NPRM. Summary of the NPRM In view of the FAA task force recommendations discussed above, the FAA issued a NPRM that was published on September 16, 2009 (74 FR 47495). The NPRM proposed to amend 14 CFR E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES part 71 by modifying the New York Class B airspace area to set a uniform Class B airspace floor of 1,300 feet above MSL over that portion of the Hudson River that extends between the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, on the south, and the vicinity of the Alpine Tower, on the north. This proposal would provide additional altitudes in the Hudson River Exclusion so that, depending on an aircraft’s purpose of flight (transiting of the Exclusion area or local operation) different altitudes can be used. This would facilitate the segregation of operations in the Hudson River Exclusion by mission profile rather than aircraft category. Currently, there are no specified altitudes for transiting aircraft, which often places them in the same altitude structure commonly used by local operators. The NPRM also proposed to amend 14 CFR part 93 to establish a Special Flight Rules Area (SFRA) and procedures governing flight operations conducted outside of Class B airspace and over portions of the Hudson River and the East River. The proposal provided that in order to operate within the SFRA: (1) Pilots would have to comply with the current recommended flight procedures for the Hudson River and East River Class B Exclusion areas; (2) pilots seeking to transit through the Hudson River Exclusion would have to transit the Hudson River Exclusion at or above an altitude of 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including, the floor of the overlying New York Class B airspace area; and (3) pilots operating fixed-wing aircraft would be required to follow the current limitations on fixed-wing aircraft operations in the East River Exclusion as contained in NOTAM number 6/ 3495. The FAA invited interested parties to participate in the rulemaking by submitting written comments on the proposal. The comment period closed on October 16, 2009. An analysis of the comments and the FAA’s responses are in the ‘‘Discussion of Comments’’ section. Summary of the Final Rule This action amends 14 CFR part 71 by adjusting the floor of the New York Class B airspace area over a portion of the Hudson River. This action also amends 14 CFR part 93 by establishing a SFRA consisting of that airspace within the Hudson River and East River Class B airspace Exclusions. The part 71 amendment establishes a new subarea, Area K, in the New York Class B airspace area, which creates a uniform Class B airspace floor of 1,300 feet MSL over the portion of the Hudson River that extends between the VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 Verrazano-Narrow Bridge, on the south, and the vicinity of the Alpine Tower (approximately 7 NM north of the George Washington Bridge) on the north. Minor editorial changes are made to descriptions of the New York Class B airspace subareas A, B, D and E to reflect the new Area K. The part 93 amendment establishes a SFRA for aircraft operations in the Hudson River and East River Class B airspace Exclusions of the New York Class B airspace area. This rule describes both the Hudson River and East River Class B Exclusion areas and defines the terms ‘‘local operation’’ and ‘‘transient operation.’’ The rule also specifies the general requirements that apply to all aircraft operating in the Hudson River and/or East River Class B Exclusions, as well as specific procedures that apply individually to each Exclusion. Differences Between the Proposed Rule and the Final Rule 14 CFR Part 71—New York Class B Airspace Area This rule includes a number of editorial changes to certain Class B airspace subarea descriptions to more accurately describe the areas. These minor changes do not differ substantially from the proposal. The NPRM proposed to establish a new Area K in the New York Class B airspace area, which would have consisted of that airspace extending upward from 1,300 feet MSL over a portion of the Hudson River. In the NPRM, the Area K description began north of LaGuardia airport at the intersection of the LGA VOR/DME 11-mile arc and the west bank of the Hudson River (near Alpine Tower). However, closer cartographic review of the proposed description determined that the 11-mile arc, as depicted on aeronautical charts, does not actually extend to intersect the west bank of the Hudson River. Therefore, the final rule inserts two latitude/ longitude points between the 11-mile arc and the west bank of the Hudson River to more accurately describe the north end of Area K (near the Alpine Tower). This aligns the boundary of the north end of the Hudson River Exclusion with an existing segment of the boundary of Area E where it crosses over the Hudson River. The NPRM also proposed to revise the description of Area D, which consists of that Class B airspace extending upward from above 1,100 feet MSL, by removing two segments that formerly existed over the Hudson River (i.e., east of Newark and west of LaGuardia). The amended Area D description only applies to the PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 59903 one remaining part of the Class B airspace area that extends upward from above 1,100 feet MSL. This area overlies part of the East River. The description of Area D in this rule differs from the NPRM by inserting the words ‘‘* * * extending from the LGA VOR/DME 6mile arc to the north end of Roosevelt Island.’’ This change clarifies that the boundaries of Area D, where the floor of Class B airspace extends upward from above 1,100 feet MSL, only extend along the East River between the LGA VOR/ DME 6-mile arc and the north end of Roosevelt Island and not the entire length of the river. The NPRM did not propose to revise subareas A and B. However, an editorial change is required to exclude the new Area K from the Area A and B descriptions, and that change is adopted in this rule. Additionally a reference to Area D is removed from the Area E description. 14 CFR Part 93—Special Flight Rules Area Based on comments received, the FAA is including two new definitions in § 93.350 for ‘‘transient operations’’ and ‘‘local operations.’’ In addition, the description of the New York Class B airspace East River Exclusion is expanded and consists of the airspace below 1,500 feet MSL over that portion of the river between the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc and the southwest tip of Governors Island; and also the airspace from the surface up to 1,100 feet MSL from the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc to the north tip of Roosevelt Island. The definition of the East River Exclusion in the NPRM incorrectly described the upper altitude limit of the Exclusion as 1,100 feet MSL along the entire river. The definition of the New York Class B airspace Hudson River Exclusion in this final rule includes a minor change that adds two latitude/longitude points to accurately describe the north end of the Exclusion. The Hudson River Exclusion lies beneath Class B airspace Area K, and this minor change ensures that the Hudson River Exclusion boundary at the north end aligns with the Area K boundary as discussed above. This change simplifies the chart depiction of the area. This rule adopts the requirement that anticollision and position/navigation lights shall be on and that the use of landing lights is recommended for operating in the East River and/or the Hudson River Exclusion areas. The NPRM proposed ‘‘anticollision, position/navigation, and/or landing lights,’’ which was confusing and could be interpreted to allow use of landing lights only. E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 59904 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations Based on comments submitted to the docket, the FAA has concluded that reporting aircraft color is unnecessary because it adds to frequency congestion and is not a significant factor to assist in looking for other aircraft. Lastly, several editorial changes were made for the purposes of clarity. erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES Compliance Date The rule is effective on November 19, 2009. The FAA selected this date because there are three aeronautical charts that are affected by the modification to the New York Class B Airspace area. The new edition of both the New York Sectional Chart and the New York Terminal Area Chart is effective on November 19. These two charts are published every 6 months and the next edition would be May 2010. The effective date of the airspace modifications and the aeronautical charts must be consistent. If the rule is not effective on November 19, the airspace modifications could not become effective until mid-next year. In addition, this rule requires a new edition of the New York Helicopter Route chart. While this particular chart is not on a regular update cycle as the terminal and aeronautical charts described above, it is republished only when significant changes occur. It is critical that this chart be updated and consistent with the terminal and aeronautical charts. The FAA acknowledges that there is a small window of time between the issuance of this rule and the effective date. As detailed earlier in this document, the FAA is promulgating this rule and amending certain air traffic procedures to enhance safety for operations over the Hudson River. The airspace modification affects a small piece of the airspace and most of the operating requirements adopted in this rule codify voluntary practices that have been in effect for a number of years. Therefore, the agency finds that there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d) to make this rule effective in less than 30 days. The FAA is taking several additional actions to inform pilots of modified airspace over the Hudson River. An email will be sent to all registered pilots advising of the final rule and available FAA training for operations in the New York Class B Airspace area. Postcards will be mailed to all pilots, for which there is no registered e-mail address. The FAA will conduct seminars and coordinate with other pilot groups to make users aware of the requirements specified in this rule. VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 Summary of Comments The FAA received 92 comments. The comments received were grouped in the following general subject areas: • Definition of ‘‘local operation’’ and ‘‘transient operation’’ in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion • Altitude stratification in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion • Separation of helicopter and fixedwing traffic • Position reports and Reporting points • Frequency congestion • Charting issues • Floor of Class B airspace over the Hudson River • Change is unnecessary • East River Class B Exclusion procedures • Aircraft not equipped with lights or an electrical system • Class B airspace informal airspace meetings • Regulatory Evaluation • Environmental Review • Other Issues outside the scope of the rule: Education and Training Teterboro transitions Altimeter setting and transponder code Enhanced surveillance coverage and aircraft avionics equipage Discussion of Comments Below is a more detailed discussion of the issues raised during the comment period. Definition of ‘‘Local Operation’’ and ‘‘Transient Operation’’ in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion Many commenters stated that the NPRM did not clearly define the terms ‘‘local area, ’’ ‘‘overflight’’ or ‘‘transient’’ operations. Several commenters interpreted the term ‘‘local operations’’ to mean helicopters only. The FAA agrees that a clarification of the terms ‘‘local’’ and ‘‘transient’’ operations are needed, and the definitions of the terms are added to § 93.350. The NPRM proposed to modify the floor of the New York Class B airspace area over a portion of the Hudson River to provide more airspace in the Hudson River Exclusion so that aircraft transiting the area are at separate altitudes from aircraft conducting local operations. The FAA concludes that segregating operations in the Hudson River Exclusion by mission profile places similar operations in the same airspace, which is operationally preferable because the dynamic parameters of PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 these two types of operations are very different. Local operations include aircraft landing and departing from the heliports and seaplane bases located within the SFRA. In addition, certain local aircraft operations require significant changes in altitude, airspeed, and/or heading, such as electronic news gathering, police activities, emergency medical services and sightseeing operations. Transient operations typically fly straight and level. Separating transient operations from local operations will enhance safety by standardizing the types of operations pilots encounter and providing a buffer between dissimilar types of operations, i.e. aircraft flying straight and level versus aircraft climbing and descending, circling, or significantly changing airspeed. The FAA also recognized that the airspace immediately surrounding the Statue of Liberty presents a particular challenge to all pilots as it is the most heavily trafficked sightseeing destination in the Hudson River Exclusion, and the southernmost turnaround point for all local helicopter tour routes. This is also the area where many local helicopter tour operators will receive ATC clearance to climb into the Class B airspace area for the northbound leg of their tours. Consequently, all pilots are cautioned to remain especially vigilant for other traffic in the vicinity of the Statue of Liberty. Pilots can transit the Hudson River Exclusion/SFRA in the airspace from 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including, 1,300 feet MSL. Pilots transiting the area shall not descend below 1,000 feet MSL. Pilots are advised not to climb or descend or make significant heading changes. However, this does not preclude pilots from taking action as needed to avoid other aircraft. It is the FAA’s intention to reserve the altitudes from 1,000 feet MSL up to but not including 1,300 feet MSL for those aircraft transiting the area without having to obtain a Class B airspace clearance. However, transiting pilots must be aware that some aircraft may climb through these altitudes from below in order to enter Class B airspace after receiving a clearance from ATC. This situation is most likely to occur in the vicinity of the Statue of Liberty and the Manhattan landing facilities. Pilots conducting local area operations should operate below 1,000 feet MSL while in the SFRA, and they must follow other pertinent regulations (e.g., minimum safe altitudes, visibility and cloud clearance requirements, and see and avoid). Pilots must also be aware that, while operating in this dynamic environment below 1,000 feet E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES MSL, they should expect to encounter aircraft that are climbing, descending, transitioning to land, making significant heading changes or operating at very slow airspeeds. Since local helicopter tour operators fly an irregular pattern near the Statue of Liberty at approximately 500 feet, other pilots intending to circle the Statue of Liberty in the Exclusion are advised to do so at the highest practical altitude below 1,000 feet MSL. Altitude Stratification in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion Many commenters disagreed with the proposed altitude structure in the Hudson River Exclusion. A number of commenters contend that the change would degrade, rather than enhance, safety. Specifically, the commenters stated that the 300 foot layer from 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including 1,300 feet MSL was insufficient for use by transiting aircraft. Some suggested that a minimum 500-foot altitude block be provided for transiting aircraft and that the 1,000-foot floor of the transit corridor should be lowered to 800 feet or 900 feet MSL. One commenter suggested that all transiting aircraft should do so in Class B airspace above the Hudson River Exclusion. Other suggestions included: separate altitudes for northbound and southbound transiting aircraft; limiting the speed in the transit corridor to 120 knots instead of 140 knots; and providing a larger cutout for the Exclusion behind the Statue of Liberty so pilots wishing to circle the Statue can do so at a higher altitude without entering Class B airspace. Other commenters requested that guidance be provided for turn arounds at the north and south ends of the Hudson River Exclusion and that fixed-wing aircraft should be required to fly south of the Verrazano Bridge before turning northbound. The FAA believes that the altitude stratification in the Hudson River Exclusion will provide more consistent airspace for pilot navigation and transit flight than exists within the current Hudson River Exclusion configuration. Even though prior to this rule the ceiling of the Exclusion varied between 1,100 feet MSL and 1,500 feet MSL, as a practical matter, the majority of these pilots were operating in this area at 1,000 feet MSL. Therefore, within a significant portion of the Exclusion, all aircraft operations (transiting and local) were mixed within the airspace 1,100 feet MSL and below. This rule requires aircraft that are simply transiting the area to do so between the altitudes of 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including, 1,300 feet MSL, VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 and this provides more options for aircraft that are transiting the Exclusion. This change also moves transiting aircraft above the altitudes that are intended for local operations within the Exclusion. One commenter suggested that all transiting aircraft operations should occur in Class B airspace, above the Hudson River Exclusion. Transiting aircraft always have the option to request Class B clearance from ATC. Separately, one of the non-rulemaking actions the FAA is taking concurrent with this rule, is to establish a published VFR transition route within the New York Class B airspace area above the Hudson River. Similar VFR transition routes exist at other Class B airspace locations, including Los Angeles and Phoenix. This new route will be depicted on the New York Sectional and Terminal Area Charts. Use of the route requires ATC clearance, but it should provide benefits including expedited handling, enhanced safety, improved communication between the controller and pilot, increased number of aircraft under positive control, reduced cockpit workload, and reduction of transiting traffic in the Exclusion airspace. Another commenter suggested designating separate altitudes for northbound and southbound aircraft transiting the Exclusion. The FAA considered this suggestion but determined that it would further reduce available altitudes for transiting aircraft. The Exclusion is sufficiently wide to allow for lateral separation between north and southbound aircraft. One commenter suggested reducing the maximum speed from 140 knots to 120 knots. The 140 knot speed was selected based on its use as a recommended practice for many years in the Hudson and East River Exclusions. Given the mix of operations that will be occurring below 1,000 feet MSL, i.e. climbing, descending, significant altitude changes, 140 knots has proven to be the maximum speed that safely enables all these operations to occur in the same airspace. The FAA did not want to exclude any certain category or class of aircraft from operating in these areas. A maximum speed of 140 knots would allow access by a greater number of different classes while maintaining safety. In addition, the FAA notes that 140 knots is the maximum speed permitted within the Los Angeles Special Flight Rules Area, and it has worked well there. Based on this longstanding practice, the FAA believes that 140 knots is appropriate for use in the Exclusions. PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 59905 One person asked that the Hudson River Exclusion be expanded behind the Statue of Liberty to permit pilots circling the Statue to do so at a higher altitude without entering Class B airspace. The FAA considered this suggestion, but is unable to adopt it because it would result in adverse impact on instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at Newark. Other commenters recommended that guidance be provided for aircraft turn arounds at the north and south ends of the Hudson River Exclusion and that fixed-wing aircraft should be required to fly south of the Verrazano Bridge before turning northbound. While these suggestions are outside the scope of this final rule, the FAA is developing a training program covering operations in the New York City area. The training program will include recommended practices such as those suggested above. Separation of Helicopter and FixedWing Traffic Several commenters interpreted the term ‘‘local operations’’ to mean that only helicopters can operate below 1,000 feet MSL in the Hudson River Exclusion, and that fixed wing aircraft operations are restricted to operate between 1,000 feet MSL up to but not including 1,300 feet MSL. The FAA noted in its task force report that current operations within the Hudson River Class B Exclusion include a high level of helicopter activity arriving and departing from the Manhattan heliports, in addition to extensive local helicopter tour operations. Fixed-wing traffic is predominantly comprised of general aviation aircraft transiting the New York area either during the en route phase of a cross country flight or on local sightseeing flights. The FAA considered separate altitudes for different aircraft category within this airspace, but did not pursue this option. Prior to this rule, there were no specified altitudes for transient aircraft, often placing them in the same altitude structure commonly used by local operators. Segregating aircraft operations based on mission (transient or local operations) will enhance safety. FAA analysis did not support altitude stratification within the existing airspace of 1,100 feet MSL and below as it could introduce additional risk and have unintended consequences by compressing demand into fewer altitude strata. Position Reports and Reporting Points Over 25 comments were received objecting to the proposed requirement that pilots operating in the Hudson River Exclusion include aircraft color E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 59906 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES when making position reports at the charted mandatory reporting points. Among the stated reasons were that the requirement contributes to frequency congestion; that it is difficult to clearly distinguish color at a distance; and that reporting aircraft color adds little value to safety. The FAA agrees with these concerns and has removed aircraft color from the position report format in § 93.352(a). In addition, the training program being developed will emphasize clear and concise position reporting procedures. Regarding the selection of reporting points, commenters requested that they be clearly visible, identifiable, and aligned with current reporting point usage. Some commenters stated that there are too many required points and they should be standardized between the Terminal Area Chart (TAC) and Helicopter Chart. One individual suggested that a new symbol be added to the charts to identify the mandatory reporting points. In response, the number of mandatory reporting points has been reduced to six. These points consist of locations that are already in use for the Hudson River Exclusion and will be reflected on both the New York Helicopter Route Chart and TAC. They will be clearly identified on the charts as mandatory reporting points using standard reporting point symbols already familiar to pilots. Frequency Congestion Many commenters identified frequency congestion on the Hudson River Exclusion Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF), 123.05, as a major concern. The number of users on 123.05, as well as heliport fixed base operators (FBO) using the frequency for dispatch information and other purposes, affect the ability to use the frequency for position reporting and aircraft-to-aircraft coordination. Commenters provided several suggestions to alleviate the congestion, including assigning a separate frequency for use by transiting aircraft; providing a separate frequency for heliport FBO use; assigning a ‘‘corridor’’ automatic terminal information service (ATIS) frequency for general information such as temporary flight restrictions; and limiting the use of the frequency to aviation purposes. Due to limited frequency spectrum availability, designation of additional frequencies as suggested is not possible at this time. An effort currently is underway to realign Hudson and East River Exclusion frequencies to reduce congestion on 123.05. One step is the future change of the Wall Street Heliport VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 frequency to 123.075. In addition, the training program being developed will specifically address standardization of phraseology for both pilot and FBO communications. Information will be included on the aeronautical charts to reflect recommended communications procedures. Regarding the use of an ATIS for the Exclusions, the purpose of ATIS is to provide airport-specific information, rather than general geographic advisory information. Further, installation of an ATIS would require equipment procurement and frequency assignment, which are beyond the scope of this rule. One commenter requested that a discrete frequency be assigned and published on the charts for VFR aircraft wishing to contact LaGuardia tower. Contact frequencies for LaGuardia (LGA), Kennedy (JFK), Newark (EWR), and Teterboro (TEB) airport traffic control towers are already shown on the New York Terminal Area and Helicopter Route charts. report on the August 8, 2009, accident before taking action. The FAA does not agree. While acknowledging the overall safety record of operations in the Hudson River Exclusion, the FAA believes that the measures in this rule, along with the other recommendations of the FAA (that do not require rulemaking action) are appropriate to further enhance the safety of visual flight rules (VFR) flight in the Hudson-East River areas. Although the NTSB has not yet issued a final report, it has issued five recommendations based on its preliminary findings and its concern about the safety of flight in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion. The NTSB recommendations are similar to actions taken by the FAA. The FAA does not agree that it should delay further action pending the release of the NTSB’s final report. Charting Issues Several commenters suggested that the FAA add enhancements to the New York aeronautical charts to expand the information available to pilots and to include the operating requirements on the charts. The FAA agrees, and will publish the same mandatory VFR reporting points on both Helicopter Route and TAC Charts; add the VFR Transition Route to the Sectional and TAC charts; and provide an expanded depiction of the SFRA area on the reverse of the TAC chart. In addition, the charts will contain insets specifying the part 93 operating requirements and sample position reporting phraseology. Two commenters opposed the proposed provision that would require ATC authorization for certain fixedwing aircraft VFR flight operations in the East River Class B Exclusion. The commenters questioned the value to safety and the rationale for requiring ATC control in the East River Exclusion while no such requirement applies in the Hudson River Exclusion. This rule codifies the requirements in NOTAM number 6/3495, which has been in effect since October 13, 2006, as a result of a fixed-wing aircraft accident in the East River Exclusion. The East River Exclusion differs from the Hudson River Exclusion in that, for most of its length, it is narrower and provides less maneuvering room for fixed-wing aircraft than is available in the Hudson River Exclusion. Additionally, the north end of the East River Exclusion ‘‘deadends’’ at the boundary of the Class B airspace surface area (west of LGA), which can place a pilot in the situation of needing either a course reversal, or obtaining ATC clearance to enter Class B airspace to proceed further. The Hudson River Exclusion also differs from the East River Exclusion by being open at both ends, providing a continuous path through the entire area. Therefore, the FAA does not believe that a similar requirement exists for the Hudson River Exclusion. For these reasons, the FAA believes that the requirement for ATC authorization and control in the East River Exclusion, as proposed, is appropriate in the interest of safety. Floor of Class B Airspace Over the Hudson River Some commenters suggested raising the floor of Class B over the Hudson River to 1500 feet or 1600 feet MSL to provide additional altitudes in the Hudson River Exclusion. The FAA does not agree with these suggestions. The floor of the Class B airspace can not be raised above 1300 feet MSL above the Hudson River Exclusion without significant adverse impact to IFR operations at LGA and EWR. Change Is Unnecessary or Premature Several commenters stated that the proposed rule changes are unnecessary or premature based on the longstanding safety record of flight operations in the Hudson River Exclusion. One commenter said that the FAA should wait for the NTSB to issue its final PO 00000 Frm 00016 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 East River Class B Exclusion Operating Procedures E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations Aircraft Not Equipped With Lights or Electrical Systems One commenter stated that no allowance is made for aircraft that are not equipped with external lights to fly the corridor. Another commenter said that aircraft without electrical systems should be permitted in this airspace. It was not the FAA’s intent to exclude aircraft without exterior lights or electrical systems from the Hudson River Exclusion. The final rule is clarified by specifying that aircraft equipped with functioning lights must turn on those lights. The use of landing lights is recommended. erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES Class B Airspace Modification Informal Airspace Meetings One commenter pointed out that the FAA did not hold an informal airspace meeting regarding the proposed change to the New York Class B airspace area as required by FAA policy. (See FAA Order 7400.2, Procedures for Handling Airspace Matters, paragraph 2–6–3.) It is the agency’s policy to hold informal airspace meetings as one means of informing the public and gathering information regarding Class B airspace. In this rule however, only a small portion of the New York Class B airspace is being modified, the area over the Hudson River. Furthermore, this modification consists of leveling the Class B floor, which varied between above 1,100 feet MSL and 1,500 feet MSL. This rule uniformly sets the floor at 1,300 feet MSL over the same segment of the river. There were no lateral alterations to the airspace and the majority of the New York Class B airspace area is not being changed in any way by this rule. The FAA saw the need for prompt action to enhance flight safety in this area and opted not to hold an informal airspace meeting in this case. The FAA concluded that a 30 day comment period would best meet the need of gathering public input on this proposal and permit this action to move expeditiously. The comment period closed on October 16, 2009. One commenter questioned whether the Task Force established by the FAA was an advisory committee subject to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). The FAA provided notice and a 30-day comment period so that all members of the public had opportunity to comment. The FAA believes that this process remedies any alleged FACA infractions. The FAA did receive one request to extend the comment period, which was denied. VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 Other Issues Comments were also received on issues concerning: Education and training; Teterboro departure procedures for VFR aircraft; altimeter setting and transponder procedures; and enhanced surveillance coverage and aircraft avionics equipage (Multilateration, TIS, TCAS, ADS–B). These issues are outside of the scope of this rulemaking action. However, responses are provided for information. Education and Training Several commenters suggested that the FAA develop an internet-based training program covering all aspects of VFR flight in the New York SFRA, similar to that produced for the Washington, DC SFRA. The FAA agrees and is developing training programs to educate pilots as well as air traffic controllers and Fixed Base Operator personnel. One commenter opposed a training program as unnecessary and burdensome since the appropriate charts will contain sufficient information. The FAA does not agree that this training is unnecessary or burdensome. Unlike the Washington, DC SFRA training program, the New York SFRA training will not be mandatory. It will supplement the information provided on the charts and include supplemental recommended practices for flight within the SFRA. Teterboro VFR Transitions Commenters recommended that the FAA develop a standard transition for fixed-wing VFR aircraft that depart Teterboro (TEB) and request to enter the Hudson River Class B Exclusion. The FAA agrees and is developing revised ATC procedures to provide guidance for VFR TEB departures requesting to enter the Hudson River Exclusion as well as separate guidance for VFR departures requesting Class B services. Altimeter Setting and Transponder Procedures Commenters submitted a number of suggestions regarding altimeter settings and transponder usage for the SFRA. One commenter requested that a radio frequency be provided for broadcasting a standard altimeter setting for the Exclusions. Another stated that the FAA should mandate the use of the Newark altimeter setting. The FAA does not agree with these suggestions. Each of the airports bracketing the SFRA (Newark, Teterboro, LaGuardia and Kennedy) has published ATIS frequencies that broadcast altimeter settings on a continuous basis. Pilots may select the altimeter setting most appropriate for PO 00000 Frm 00017 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 59907 their route of flight. Guidance for setting altimeters is provided in 14 CFR 91.121. One commenter suggested that a standard VFR transponder code be assigned to aircraft operating in the SFRA if this would be helpful to ATC. The FAA determined that a discrete transponder code for VFR flights in the Exclusions would not be useful for ATC. Since aircraft operations in the Exclusions are conducted under VFR, ATC services are not routinely provided. The FAA does not believe that a discrete code, as opposed to the standard 1200 VFR code, would provide any additional benefit. Another commenter stated that the requirement for a transponder will disenfranchise aircraft that are not equipped with an electrical system. This rule did not propose any new transponder requirements. Regulations governing transponder use in the National Airspace System are contained in 14 CFR 91.215. In part, that regulation requires that all aircraft operated within 30 nautical miles of an airport listed in Appendix D to part 91 (i.e., those airports where Class B airspace has been designated) must have an operable transponder with altitude reporting capability. The regulation contains specific procedures to accommodate aircraft not equipped with an engine-driven electrical system (see § 91.215(b)(3)). Enhanced Surveillance Coverage and Aircraft Avionics Equipage One commenter said the FAA should consider the longer-term installation of wide area multilateration technology for the ‘‘corridor’’ and adjacent areas to increase ATC surveillance coverage without requiring additional airborne equipment. Others said that equipment such as the Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS), Traffic Information Service (TIS) and Automatic Dependent Surveillance— Broadcast (ADS–B) should be used in the Exclusion. The FAA is exploring the use of multilateration technology to improve surveillance coverage in the SFRA area. This technology involves the placement of numerous sensors at a variety of locations to achieve improved coverage. This could permit earlier processing of conflict alerts and traffic calls for aircraft entering and leaving the Class B airspace. However, it will not replace application of ‘‘see and avoid’’ already in use in the Exclusion. The FAA considered requiring the use of TCAS and TIS in the Exclusion. However, the following problems were identified: E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 59908 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations • Excessive amount of TCAS/TIS alerts, (common in dense traffic areas) causing distractions, increased pilot workload detracting from the pilot’s primary obligation to ‘‘see and avoid’’ • Response to resolution advisories could cause an unwanted intrusion into Class B airspace, resulting in possible conflicts. Enhanced surveillance coverage and expanded use of systems such as TCAS and ADS–B represent longer term initiatives that are outside the scope of this rule. However, nothing in this rule precludes the future implementation of advanced technology that will enhance the safety of the NAS. Paperwork Reduction Act The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d)) requires the FAA consider the impact of paperwork and other information collection burdens imposed on the public. We have determined there is no current or new requirement for information collection associated with this amendment. erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES International Compatibility In keeping with U.S. obligations under the Convention on International Civil Aviation, it is FAA policy to comply with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Standards and Recommended Practices to the maximum extent practicable. The FAA has determined that there are no ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices that correspond to these regulations. Regulatory Evaluation, Regulatory Flexibility Determination, International Trade Impact Assessment, and Unfunded Mandates Assessment Changes to Federal regulations must undergo several economic analyses. First, Executive Order 12866 directs that each Federal agency shall propose or adopt a regulation only upon a reasoned determination that the benefits of the intended regulation justify its costs. Second, the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96–354) requires agencies to analyze the economic impact of regulatory changes on small entities. Third, the Trade Agreements Act (Pub. L. 96–39) prohibits agencies from setting standards that create unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of the United States. In developing U.S. standards, the Trade Act requires agencies to consider international standards and, where appropriate, that they be the basis of U.S. standards. Fourth, the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104–4) requires agencies to prepare a written assessment of the costs, benefits, and other effects of proposed or final VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 rules that include a Federal mandate likely to result in the expenditure by State, local, or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more annually (adjusted for inflation with base year of 1995). This portion of the preamble summarizes the FAA’s analysis of the economic impacts of this final rule. Department of Transportation Order DOT 2100.5 prescribes policies and procedures for simplification, analysis, and review of regulations. If the expected cost impact is so minimal that a proposed or final rule does not warrant a full evaluation, this order permits that a statement to that effect and the basis for it be included in the preamble if a full regulatory evaluation of the cost and benefits is not prepared. Such a determination has been made for this final rule. The reasoning for this determination follows. This rule merely sets a uniform ceiling in the Hudson River Exclusion to facilitate segregation of overflights from local traffic. Pilots will self-announce at the reporting points while in the Exclusion area. Pilot training regarding this change is voluntary. We are incorporating the existing NOTAM restricting certain fixed-wing operations in the East River Exclusion Area. Pilots will be required to carry current charts, at a cost of $5.25 each. As a result, the cost is minimal. For these just discussed facts we received no comments regarding our minimal cost determination and we reduced the number of reporting points. We did receive a comment claiming an increase in cost because of a potential increase in noise. As discussed below in the Environmental Review there is no increase in noise on communities because the rule will not increase operations, and operations are over the Hudson River, rather than over communities. Therefore, there is no increase in noise cost. The action is categorically excluded from further environmental documentation according to Order 1050.1E, ‘‘Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,’’ in accordance with paragraphs 307a, 311a, 311j and 312d. Therefore, this rule does not change the quantity of flights, nor training requirements, continues the existing safety restriction in the East River Exclusion Area, chart costs are minimal, and there is no increase in the cost of noise. In addition, these changes will improve airspace safety. FAA has, therefore, determined that this final rule is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ as defined in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, and is not ‘‘significant’’ as PO 00000 Frm 00018 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 defined in DOT’s Regulatory Policies and Procedures. Regulatory Flexibility Determination The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96–354) (RFA) establishes ‘‘as a principle of regulatory issuance that agencies shall endeavor, consistent with the objectives of the rule and of applicable statutes, to fit regulatory and informational requirements to the scale of the businesses, organizations, and governmental jurisdictions subject to regulation. To achieve this principle, agencies are required to solicit and consider flexible regulatory proposals and to explain the rationale for their actions to assure that such proposals are given serious consideration.’’ The RFA covers a wide-range of small entities, including small businesses, not-forprofit organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions. Agencies must perform a review to determine whether a rule will have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. If the agency determines that it will, the agency must prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis as described in the RFA. However, if an agency determines that a rule is not expected to have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, section 605(b) of the RFA provides that the head of the agency may so certify and a regulatory flexibility analysis is not required. The certification must include a statement providing the factual basis for this determination, and the reasoning should be clear. We agree the rule may well affect a substantial number of small entities. However, the FAA has determined this rule will impose only minimal cost; therefore there is not a significant economic impact. We received no comments changing our minimal cost estimate and no NPRM comments disputing our small entity determination. Therefore, I certify that this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. International Trade Analysis The Trade Agreements Act of 1979 (Pub. L. 96–39), as amended by the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (Pub. L. 103–465), prohibits Federal agencies from establishing any standards or engaging in related activities that create unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of the United States. Pursuant to these Acts, the establishment of standards is not considered unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of the United States, so long as the standards have a E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations legitimate domestic objective, such as the protection of safety, and do not operate in a manner that excludes imports that meet this objective. The statute also requires consideration of international standards and, where appropriate, that they be the basis for U.S. standards. The FAA notes the purpose is to ensure the safety of the American public, and has assessed the effects of this rule to ensure it does not exclude imports that meet this objective. As a result, this final rule is not considered as creating an unnecessary obstacle to foreign commerce. Unfunded Mandates Assessment Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104–4) requires each Federal agency to prepare a written statement assessing the effects of any Federal mandate in a proposed or final agency rule that may result in an expenditure of $100 million or more (in 1995 dollars) in any one year by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector; such a mandate is deemed to be a ‘‘significant regulatory action.’’ The FAA currently uses an inflation-adjusted value of $136.1 million in lieu of $100 million. This final rule does not contain such a mandate; therefore, the requirements of Title II of the Act do not apply. Executive Order 13132, Federalism The FAA has analyzed this final rule under the principles and criteria of Executive Order 13132, Federalism. We determined that this action will not have a substantial direct effect on the States, or the relationship between the Federal Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government, and, therefore, does not have federalism implications. erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES Environmental Review The FAA has reviewed the above described action and determined that it is categorically excluded from further environmental documentation according to FAA Order 1050.1E, ‘‘Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,’’ in accordance with paragraphs 307a, 311a, 311j and 312d. Additionally, the implementation of this action will not result in any extraordinary circumstances in accordance with Order 1050.1E paragraph 304. A copy of this Declaration is posted in the docket. Specifically, in accordance with: 1. Paragraph 307a, the FAA is implementing these measures to respond to the accident over the Hudson River on August 8, 2009, and there is no VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 reasonably foreseeable significant longterm adverse effect from this action; 2. Paragraph 311a, the action is to modify Class B airspace; 3. Paragraph 311j, the action implements procedures to respond to accidents with no reasonably foreseeable long-term adverse effects; and, 4. Paragraph 312d, this action supports issuance of regulatory documents (issuance of a Final Rule). Additionally, in accordance with paragraph 304, there are no extraordinary circumstances associated with this action which would preclude the use of any of the categorical exclusions listed above. This action focuses specifically on helicopters and other aircraft that operate utilizing Visual Flight Rule (VFR) conditions above the Hudson River and not over any residential areas. Therefore it will not: 1. Have an adverse effect any National Historic Preservation Act properties; 2. Impact properties under section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act; 3. Impact resources under the Endangered Species Act; 4. Cause a division or disruption to an established community; 5. Cause an increase in congestion of surface transportation; 6. Have an impact on noise levels of noise-sensitive areas. Although the change in altitude is below 3,000 feet MSL, there will be no increase in noise over noise sensitive areas because the location of the change is over the Hudson River; 7. Have an impact on air quality; 8. Have an impact on water quality; 9. Affect the quality of the human environment that is likely to be highly controversial (create a substantial dispute related to the size, nature, or effect) on environmental grounds; 10. Likely to be inconsistent with any Federal, State, Tribal or Local laws; and, 11. Likely to directly or cumulatively create a significant impact on the human environment. Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use The FAA analyzed this final rule under Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations that Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use (May 18, 2001). We have determined that it is not a ‘‘significant energy action’’ under the executive order because it is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ and it is not likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 59909 Availability of Rulemaking Documents You can get an electronic copy of rulemaking documents 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. You can also get a copy 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 amendment number or docket number of this rulemaking. 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://DocketsInfo.dot.gov. Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act The Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) of 1996 requires FAA to comply with small entity requests for information or advice about compliance with statutes and regulations within its jurisdiction. If you are a small entity and you have a question regarding this document, you may contact your local FAA official, or the person listed under the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT heading at the beginning of the preamble. You can find out more about SBREFA on the Internet at http://www.faa.gov/ regulations_policies/rulemaking/ sbre_act/. List of Subjects 14 CFR Part 71 Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air). 14 CFR Part 93 Aircraft flight, Airspace, Aviation safety, Air traffic control, Aircraft, Airmen, Airports. The Amendments In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends 14 CFR part 71 and 14 CFR part 93 as follows: ■ E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 59910 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations PART 71—DESIGNATION OF CLASS A, B, C, D AND E AIRSPACE AREAS; AIR TRAFFIC SERVICE ROUTES; AND REPORTING POINTS 1. The authority citation for part 71 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40103, 40113, 40120; E.O. 10854, 24 FR 9565, 3 CFR, 1959– 1963 Comp., p. 389. § 71.1 [Amended] 2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of the FAA Order 7400.9T, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 27, 2009 and effective September 15, 2009, is amended as follows: ■ Paragraph 3000 Class B Airspace * * * * * New York, NY [Amended] * erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES AEA NY B * * * * Boundaries. By removing the descriptions of Area A, Area B, Area D and Area E and substituting the following; and by adding a new Area K as follows: Area A. That airspace extending upward from the surface to and including 7,000 feet MSL within an 8-mile radius circle of Kennedy (JFK) VORTAC; within a 4-mile radius circle centered at lat. 40°41′30″N., long. 74°09′59″W.; and within a 6-mile radius circle of LaGuardia (LGA) VOR; excluding the airspace within and below Areas B, J and K hereinafter described and excluding that airspace east of LaGuardia Airport bounded by a line beginning at the point of intersection of the LGA VOR/DME 071° radial and the 6-mile arc of the LGA VOR/ DME, thence clockwise along the LGA VOR/ DME 6-mile arc to the LGA 093° radial, thence westerly to the intersection of the Clearview Expressway with a line extending from the LaGuardia 093° radial 6-mile DME fix to the southern edge of Bowne Park; thence to the southern edge of Leavitts Park; thence direct to the JFK VORTAC 340° radial 9-mile DME fix; direct to the JFK VORTAC 341° radial 10-mile DME fix; thence direct to the point of beginning. Area B. That airspace extending upward from above 500 feet MSL to and including 7,000 feet MSL within an 8-mile radius circle of JFK VORTAC south of a line beginning at the intersection of the JFK VORTAC 237° radial and the Atlantic Ocean shoreline, thence easterly along the shoreline to its intersection with the JFK VORTAC 125° radial 5-mile DME fix, thence northerly along the 5-mile DME arc to and easterly along the JFK VORTAC 94° radial to the 8-mile radius circle of JFK VORTAC; that airspace within a 6-mile radius circle of LGA VOR/DME bounded by a line beginning at the intersection of the 6-mile radius circle and the LGA VOR/DME 039° radial, thence southwesterly along the LGA VOR/DME 039° radial to and southerly along the Bronx shoreline to the north stanchion of the Throggs Neck Bridge, thence direct to the intersection of the LGA VOR/DME 071° VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 radial and the 6-mile radius circle of LGA VOR/DME, thence counterclockwise along the 6-mile radius circle to the point of beginning; and that airspace between the 4mile and the 6.5-mile radii of a circle centered at lat. 40°41′30″N., long. 74°09′59″W.; excluding that airspace within and below Areas C, J and K hereinafter described. Area D. That airspace extending upward from above 1,100 feet MSL to and including 7,000 feet MSL within the area between the east and west banks of the East River extending from the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc to the north end of Roosevelt Island. Area E. That airspace extending upward from 1,500 feet MSL to and including 7,000 feet MSL within the area bounded by a line beginning at the intersection of the 20-mile radius circle of JFK VORTAC and the JFK VORTAC 208° radial, thence counterclockwise along the 20-mile arc to its intersection with the Long Island shoreline, thence southwest along the Long Island shoreline to and counterclockwise along the 13-mile radius circle of JFK VORTAC to and counterclockwise along the 11-mile radius circle of LGA VOR/DME to the LGA VOR/ DME 351° radial, thence direct to the LGA VOR/DME 283° radial at the LGA VOR/DME 17-mile DME fix, thence counterclockwise along a 10-mile radius circle centered at lat. 40°41′30″N., long. 74°09′59″W., to its intersection with the Colts Neck VORTAC 005° radial, thence direct to the intersection of the Colts Neck VORTAC 034° radial and the New Jersey shoreline at Sandy Hook, thence south along the New Jersey shoreline to the point of beginning; and that airspace within 2 miles each side of the Newark ILS Runway 4L localizer course, extending from the CHESA outer marker to 6 miles southwest of the outer marker, excluding that airspace within and below Areas A, B, and C previously described; and excluding the airspace within and below Areas F, J and K hereinafter described. Area K. That airspace extending upward from 1,300 feet MSL, to and including 7,000 feet MSL, north of LaGuardia Airport, within the area beginning on the west bank of the Hudson River at lat. 40°57′45″N., long. 73°54′48″W., (near Alpine Tower) thence south along the west bank of the Hudson River to intersect the Colts Neck VOR/DME 012° radial, thence southwest along the Colts Neck 012° radial to the Hudson River shoreline, thence south along the shoreline to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, thence east along the Bridge to the east bank of the Hudson River, thence north along the east bank of the Hudson River to lat. 40°38′39″N., long. 74°02′03″W., thence north along a line drawn direct to the southwesternmost point of Governors Island, thence north along a line drawn direct to the southwest tip of Manhattan Island, thence north along the east bank of the Hudson River to the LGA VOR/ DME 11-mile arc, north of LaGuardia Airport, thence counterclockwise along the 11-mile arc to lat. 40°57′54″N., long. 73°54′23″W., thence to the point of beginning. * PO 00000 * * Frm 00020 * Fmt 4700 * Sfmt 4700 PART 93—SPECIAL AIR TRAFFIC RULES 3. The authority citation for part 93 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C 106(g), 40103, 40106, 40109, 40113, 44502, 44514, 44701, 44719, 46301. 4. Add subpart W, consisting of §§ 93.350 through 93.353, to read as follows: ■ Subpart W—New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East River Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area Sec. 93.350 Definitions. 93.351 General requirements for operating in the East River and/or Hudson River Exclusions. 93.352 Hudson River Exclusion specific operating procedures. 93.353 East River Exclusion specific operating procedures. Subpart W—New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East River Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area § 93.350 Definitions. For the purposes of this subpart only the following definitions apply: (a) Local operation. Any aircraft within the Hudson River Exclusion that is conducting an operation other than as described in paragraph (b) of this section. Local operations include but are not limited to operations for sightseeing, electronic news gathering, and law enforcement. (b) Transient operation. Aircraft transiting the entire length of the Hudson River Class B Exclusion, as defined in paragraph (d) of this section, from one end to the other. (c) New York Class B airspace East River Exclusion is that airspace below 1,500 feet MSL between the east and west banks of, and overlying, the East River beginning at lat. 40°38′39″N., long. 74°02′03″W., thence north along a line drawn direct to the southwestern tip of Governors Island, thence north along a line direct to the southwest tip of Manhattan Island, thence north along the west bank of the East River to the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc, thence counterclockwise along the 6-mile arc to the east bank of the East River, thence south along the east bank of the East River to the point of beginning at lat. 40°38′39″N., long 74°02′03″W.; and that airspace 1,100 feet MSL and below between the east and west banks of, and overlying the East River, from the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc to the north tip of Roosevelt Island. (d) New York Class B airspace Hudson River Exclusion is that area E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 222 / Thursday, November 19, 2009 / Rules and Regulations from the surface up to but not including the overlying floor of the New York Class B airspace area, between the east and west banks of, and overlying, the Hudson River within the area beginning north of LaGuardia Airport on the west bank of the Hudson River at lat. 40°57′45″N., long. 73°54′48″W. (near Alpine Tower), thence south along the west bank of the Hudson River to intersect the Colts Neck VOR/DME 012° radial, thence southwest along the Colts Neck 012° radial to the Hudson River shoreline, thence south along the shoreline to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, thence east along the Bridge to the east bank of the Hudson River, thence north along the east bank of the Hudson River to lat. 40°38′39″N., long. 74°02′03″W., thence north along a line drawn direct to the southwesternmost point of Governors Island, thence north along a line drawn direct to the southwest tip of Manhattan Island, thence north along the east bank of the Hudson River to the LGA VOR/DME 11mile arc, north of LaGuardia Airport, thence counterclockwise along the 11mile arc to lat. 40°57′54″N., long. 73°54′23″W., thence to the point of beginning. § 93.351 General requirements for operating in the East River and/or Hudson River Exclusions. Pilots must adhere to the following requirements: (a) Maintain an indicated airspeed not to exceed 140 knots. (b) Anti-collision lights and aircraft position/navigation lights shall be on, if equipped. Use of landing lights is recommended. (c) Self announce position on the appropriate radio frequency for the East River or Hudson River as depicted on the New York VFR Terminal Area Chart (TAC) and/or New York Helicopter Route Chart. (d) Have a current New York TAC chart and/or New York Helicopter Route Chart in the aircraft and be familiar with the information contained therein. erowe on DSK5CLS3C1PROD with RULES § 93.352 Hudson River Exclusion specific operating procedures. In addition to the requirements in § 93.351, the following procedures apply: (a) Pilots must self announce, at the charted mandatory reporting points, the following information: aircraft type, current position, direction of flight, and altitude. (b) Pilots must fly along the west shoreline of the Hudson River when southbound, and along the east shoreline of the Hudson River when northbound; while remaining within the VerDate Nov<24>2008 15:20 Nov 18, 2009 Jkt 220001 boundaries of the Hudson River Exclusion as defined in § 93.350(d). (c) Aircraft transiting the area within the Hudson River Exclusion in accordance with § 93.350(b) must transit the Hudson River Exclusion at or above an altitude of 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including, the floor of the overlying Class B airspace. § 93.353 East River Exclusion specific operating procedures. No person may operate an airplane in the East River Exclusion extending from the southwestern tip of Governors Island to the north tip of Roosevelt Island except: (a) Seaplanes landing on or taking off from the river; or (b) Airplanes authorized by ATC. Pilots must contact LaGuardia Airport Traffic Control Tower prior to Governors Island for authorization. Issued in Washington, DC, on November 10, 2009. J. Randolph Babbitt, Administrator. [FR Doc. E9–27539 Filed 11–16–09; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 558 [Docket No. FDA–2009–N–0665] New Animal Drugs for Use in Animal Feeds; Melengestrol; Monensin AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS. ACTION: Final rule. SUMMARY: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is amending the animal drug regulations to reflect approval of a supplemental new animal drug application (NADA) filed by Pharmacia & Upjohn Co., a Division of Pfizer, Inc. The supplemental NADA provides for use of the same increased dose levels approved for singleingredient Type C medicated feeds for heifers fed in confinement for slaughter containing melengestrol acetate or monensin in two-way, combination drug Type C medicated feeds containing melengestrol acetate and monensin. DATES: This rule is effective November 19, 2009. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Suzanne J. Sechen, Center for Veterinary Medicine (HFV–126), Food and Drug Administration, 7500 Standish Pl., Rockville, MD 20855, 240–276–8105, email: suzanne.sechen@fda.hhs.gov. PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 59911 Pharmacia & Upjohn Co., a Division of Pfizer, Inc., 235 East 42d St., New York, NY 10017, filed a supplement to NADA 125–476 for use of MGA (melengestrol acetate) and RUMENSIN (monensin, USP) single-ingredient Type A medicated articles to make two-way, combination drug Type C medicated feeds for heifers fed in confinement for slaughter. The supplemental NADA provides for use of the same increased dose levels approved for single ingredient Type C medicated feeds containing melengestrol acetate or monensin in the two-way, combination drug Type C medicated feeds. The supplemental application is approved as of October 1, 2009, and the regulations are amended in 21 CFR 558.342 to reflect the approval. In accordance with the freedom of information provisions of 21 CFR part 20 and 21 CFR 514.11(e)(2)(ii), a summary of safety and effectiveness data and information submitted to support approval of this application may be seen in the Division of Dockets Management (HFA–305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. The agency has determined under 21 CFR 25.33 that this action is of a type that does not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. Therefore, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required. This rule does not meet the definition of ‘‘rule’’ in 5 U.S.C. 804(3)(A) because it is a rule of ‘‘particular applicability.’’ Therefore, it is not subject to the congressional review requirements in 5 U.S.C. 801–808. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 558 Animal drugs, Animal feeds. Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs and redelegated to the Center for Veterinary Medicine, 21 CFR part 558 is amended as follows: ■ PART 558—NEW ANIMAL DRUGS FOR USE IN ANIMAL FEEDS 1. The authority citation for 21 CFR part 558 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 21 U.S.C. 360b, 371. 2. In § 558.342, add paragraph (e)(1)(x) to read as follows: ■ § 558.342 * Melengestrol. * * (e) * * * E:\FR\FM\19NOR1.SGM 19NOR1 * *

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 222 (Thursday, November 19, 2009)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 59902-59911]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-27539]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Parts 71 and 93

[Docket No.: FAA-2009-0837; Airspace Docket No. 09-AWA-2; Amendment 
Nos. 71-34, 93-94]
RIN 2120-AJ59


Modification of the New York, NY, Class B Airspace Area; and 
Establishment of the New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East 
River Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: This action makes a minor modification to the New York, NY, 
Class B airspace area by adjusting the floor of Class B airspace above 
a portion of the Hudson River to 1,300 feet above mean sea level (MSL). 
Additionally, this action establishes a Special Flight Rules Area 
(SFRA) over the Hudson River and East River to mandate certain pilot 
operating practices for flight within the Hudson River and East River 
Class B airspace Exclusions. The FAA is taking this action to enhance 
the safety of flight operations in the New York Class B airspace 
Exclusion areas.

DATES: These amendments are effective 0901 UTC, November 19, 2009. The 
Director of the Federal Register approves the incorporation by 
reference of the 14 CFR part 71 amendment in this action under 1 CFR 
part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.9 and 
publication of conforming amendments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical questions concerning 
this rule, contact Paul Gallant, Airspace and Rules Group, Office of 
System Operations Airspace and AIM, Federal Aviation Administration, 
800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 
267-8783.
    For legal questions concerning this rule, contact Lorelei Peter, 
Office of the Chief Counsel, AGC-220, Federal Aviation Administration, 
800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone (202) 
267-3134.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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 this 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 section also provides for the FAA to prescribe 
air traffic regulations on the flight of aircraft (including 
regulations on safe altitudes) for: (1) Navigating, protecting, and 
identifying aircraft; (2) protecting individuals and property on the 
ground; (3) using the navigable airspace efficiently; and (4) 
preventing collision between aircraft, between aircraft and land or 
water vehicles, and between aircraft and airborne objects.

Background

    On August 8, 2009, a midair collision occurred between a helicopter 
and a single-engine, fixed-wing aircraft operating in accordance with 
visual flight rules (VFR) over the Hudson River near Hoboken, New 
Jersey. The collision occurred beneath the New York Class B airspace 
area in an area commonly referred to as the Hudson River Class B 
airspace Exclusion. This accident prompted the FAA and the National 
Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to examine the airspace 
configuration and pilot procedures that apply in the vicinity of the 
incident.
    The Hudson River Exclusion extends along the Hudson River between 
the vicinity of the George Washington Bridge, on the north, and the 
Verrazano-Narrows Bridge on the south. The Exclusion extends from the 
surface of the Hudson River up to the base of the overlying New York 
Class B airspace area. Currently, the floor of Class B airspace along 
the Hudson River varies between an altitude above 1,100 feet MSL and 
1,500 feet MSL. The Exclusion effectively is a ``cutout'' from the New 
York Class B airspace area and permits pilots to fly through the area 
without an air traffic control (ATC) clearance.
    The East River Class B Exclusion extends between the east and west 
banks of the East River from Governors Island to the north tip of 
Roosevelt Island. The exclusion extends from the surface of the river 
up to the base of the overlying Class B airspace.
    In light of the accident on August 11, 2009, the FAA issued Notice 
to Airmen (NOTAM) number 9/3952 strongly advising pilots to follow the 
long-standing recommended procedures for aircraft operating in the 
Hudson River and East River Exclusion areas. Specifically, these 
procedures request that aircraft operating in the area:
     Not exceed 140 knots indicated airspeed;
     Turn on anticollision, position, navigation and/or landing 
lights; and
     Self announce on frequency 123.075 for the East River and 
123.05 for the Hudson River.

The NOTAM emphasized that the above recommendations do not relieve 
pilots of compliance with applicable regulations, including regulations 
concerning minimum safe altitudes and see-and-avoid responsibilities.
    On August 14, 2009, the FAA formed a task force to review current 
procedures for VFR flight operations in the New York City area. A goal 
of the review was to identify safety enhancements to flight operations 
in the Hudson River area. The task force developed eight 
recommendations which were included in the Review of New York Visual 
Flight Rules Airspace: Task Force Report, dated August 28, 2009. A copy 
of the report was placed in rulemaking docket for the notice of 
proposed rulemaking (NPRM). Two of the eight recommendations (numbers 
one and five) require rulemaking action to: (1) Modify the floor of 
Class B airspace over a portion of the Hudson River; and (2) mandate 
compliance with the previously recommended procedures for flight in the 
Hudson River and East River Exclusion areas. Those two recommendations 
are the subject of this rulemaking action.
    Based on its preliminary findings, the NTSB issued a number of 
recommendations that are similar to those developed by the FAA task 
force. The NTSB recommendations are also available for viewing in the 
rulemaking docket for the NPRM.

Summary of the NPRM

    In view of the FAA task force recommendations discussed above, the 
FAA issued a NPRM that was published on September 16, 2009 (74 FR 
47495). The NPRM proposed to amend 14 CFR

[[Page 59903]]

part 71 by modifying the New York Class B airspace area to set a 
uniform Class B airspace floor of 1,300 feet above MSL over that 
portion of the Hudson River that extends between the Verrazano-Narrows 
Bridge, on the south, and the vicinity of the Alpine Tower, on the 
north. This proposal would provide additional altitudes in the Hudson 
River Exclusion so that, depending on an aircraft's purpose of flight 
(transiting of the Exclusion area or local operation) different 
altitudes can be used. This would facilitate the segregation of 
operations in the Hudson River Exclusion by mission profile rather than 
aircraft category. Currently, there are no specified altitudes for 
transiting aircraft, which often places them in the same altitude 
structure commonly used by local operators.
    The NPRM also proposed to amend 14 CFR part 93 to establish a 
Special Flight Rules Area (SFRA) and procedures governing flight 
operations conducted outside of Class B airspace and over portions of 
the Hudson River and the East River. The proposal provided that in 
order to operate within the SFRA: (1) Pilots would have to comply with 
the current recommended flight procedures for the Hudson River and East 
River Class B Exclusion areas; (2) pilots seeking to transit through 
the Hudson River Exclusion would have to transit the Hudson River 
Exclusion at or above an altitude of 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not 
including, the floor of the overlying New York Class B airspace area; 
and (3) pilots operating fixed-wing aircraft would be required to 
follow the current limitations on fixed-wing aircraft operations in the 
East River Exclusion as contained in NOTAM number 6/3495.
    The FAA invited interested parties to participate in the rulemaking 
by submitting written comments on the proposal. The comment period 
closed on October 16, 2009. An analysis of the comments and the FAA's 
responses are in the ``Discussion of Comments'' section.

Summary of the Final Rule

    This action amends 14 CFR part 71 by adjusting the floor of the New 
York Class B airspace area over a portion of the Hudson River. This 
action also amends 14 CFR part 93 by establishing a SFRA consisting of 
that airspace within the Hudson River and East River Class B airspace 
Exclusions.
    The part 71 amendment establishes a new subarea, Area K, in the New 
York Class B airspace area, which creates a uniform Class B airspace 
floor of 1,300 feet MSL over the portion of the Hudson River that 
extends between the Verrazano-Narrow Bridge, on the south, and the 
vicinity of the Alpine Tower (approximately 7 NM north of the George 
Washington Bridge) on the north. Minor editorial changes are made to 
descriptions of the New York Class B airspace subareas A, B, D and E to 
reflect the new Area K.
    The part 93 amendment establishes a SFRA for aircraft operations in 
the Hudson River and East River Class B airspace Exclusions of the New 
York Class B airspace area. This rule describes both the Hudson River 
and East River Class B Exclusion areas and defines the terms ``local 
operation'' and ``transient operation.'' The rule also specifies the 
general requirements that apply to all aircraft operating in the Hudson 
River and/or East River Class B Exclusions, as well as specific 
procedures that apply individually to each Exclusion.

Differences Between the Proposed Rule and the Final Rule

14 CFR Part 71--New York Class B Airspace Area

    This rule includes a number of editorial changes to certain Class B 
airspace subarea descriptions to more accurately describe the areas. 
These minor changes do not differ substantially from the proposal. The 
NPRM proposed to establish a new Area K in the New York Class B 
airspace area, which would have consisted of that airspace extending 
upward from 1,300 feet MSL over a portion of the Hudson River. In the 
NPRM, the Area K description began north of LaGuardia airport at the 
intersection of the LGA VOR/DME 11-mile arc and the west bank of the 
Hudson River (near Alpine Tower). However, closer cartographic review 
of the proposed description determined that the 11-mile arc, as 
depicted on aeronautical charts, does not actually extend to intersect 
the west bank of the Hudson River. Therefore, the final rule inserts 
two latitude/longitude points between the 11-mile arc and the west bank 
of the Hudson River to more accurately describe the north end of Area K 
(near the Alpine Tower). This aligns the boundary of the north end of 
the Hudson River Exclusion with an existing segment of the boundary of 
Area E where it crosses over the Hudson River.
    The NPRM also proposed to revise the description of Area D, which 
consists of that Class B airspace extending upward from above 1,100 
feet MSL, by removing two segments that formerly existed over the 
Hudson River (i.e., east of Newark and west of LaGuardia). The amended 
Area D description only applies to the one remaining part of the Class 
B airspace area that extends upward from above 1,100 feet MSL. This 
area overlies part of the East River. The description of Area D in this 
rule differs from the NPRM by inserting the words ``* * * extending 
from the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc to the north end of Roosevelt Island.'' 
This change clarifies that the boundaries of Area D, where the floor of 
Class B airspace extends upward from above 1,100 feet MSL, only extend 
along the East River between the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile arc and the north 
end of Roosevelt Island and not the entire length of the river.
    The NPRM did not propose to revise subareas A and B. However, an 
editorial change is required to exclude the new Area K from the Area A 
and B descriptions, and that change is adopted in this rule. 
Additionally a reference to Area D is removed from the Area E 
description.

14 CFR Part 93--Special Flight Rules Area

    Based on comments received, the FAA is including two new 
definitions in Sec.  93.350 for ``transient operations'' and ``local 
operations.'' In addition, the description of the New York Class B 
airspace East River Exclusion is expanded and consists of the airspace 
below 1,500 feet MSL over that portion of the river between the LGA 
VOR/DME 6-mile arc and the southwest tip of Governors Island; and also 
the airspace from the surface up to 1,100 feet MSL from the LGA VOR/DME 
6-mile arc to the north tip of Roosevelt Island. The definition of the 
East River Exclusion in the NPRM incorrectly described the upper 
altitude limit of the Exclusion as 1,100 feet MSL along the entire 
river.
    The definition of the New York Class B airspace Hudson River 
Exclusion in this final rule includes a minor change that adds two 
latitude/longitude points to accurately describe the north end of the 
Exclusion. The Hudson River Exclusion lies beneath Class B airspace 
Area K, and this minor change ensures that the Hudson River Exclusion 
boundary at the north end aligns with the Area K boundary as discussed 
above. This change simplifies the chart depiction of the area.
    This rule adopts the requirement that anticollision and position/
navigation lights shall be on and that the use of landing lights is 
recommended for operating in the East River and/or the Hudson River 
Exclusion areas. The NPRM proposed ``anticollision, position/
navigation, and/or landing lights,'' which was confusing and could be 
interpreted to allow use of landing lights only.

[[Page 59904]]

    Based on comments submitted to the docket, the FAA has concluded 
that reporting aircraft color is unnecessary because it adds to 
frequency congestion and is not a significant factor to assist in 
looking for other aircraft.
    Lastly, several editorial changes were made for the purposes of 
clarity.

Compliance Date

    The rule is effective on November 19, 2009. The FAA selected this 
date because there are three aeronautical charts that are affected by 
the modification to the New York Class B Airspace area. The new edition 
of both the New York Sectional Chart and the New York Terminal Area 
Chart is effective on November 19. These two charts are published every 
6 months and the next edition would be May 2010. The effective date of 
the airspace modifications and the aeronautical charts must be 
consistent. If the rule is not effective on November 19, the airspace 
modifications could not become effective until mid-next year.
    In addition, this rule requires a new edition of the New York 
Helicopter Route chart. While this particular chart is not on a regular 
update cycle as the terminal and aeronautical charts described above, 
it is republished only when significant changes occur. It is critical 
that this chart be updated and consistent with the terminal and 
aeronautical charts.
    The FAA acknowledges that there is a small window of time between 
the issuance of this rule and the effective date. As detailed earlier 
in this document, the FAA is promulgating this rule and amending 
certain air traffic procedures to enhance safety for operations over 
the Hudson River. The airspace modification affects a small piece of 
the airspace and most of the operating requirements adopted in this 
rule codify voluntary practices that have been in effect for a number 
of years. Therefore, the agency finds that there is good cause under 5 
U.S.C. 553(d) to make this rule effective in less than 30 days.
    The FAA is taking several additional actions to inform pilots of 
modified airspace over the Hudson River. An e-mail will be sent to all 
registered pilots advising of the final rule and available FAA training 
for operations in the New York Class B Airspace area. Postcards will be 
mailed to all pilots, for which there is no registered e-mail address. 
The FAA will conduct seminars and coordinate with other pilot groups to 
make users aware of the requirements specified in this rule.

Summary of Comments

    The FAA received 92 comments. The comments received were grouped in 
the following general subject areas:
     Definition of ``local operation'' and ``transient 
operation'' in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion
     Altitude stratification in the Hudson River Class B 
Exclusion
     Separation of helicopter and fixed-wing traffic
     Position reports and Reporting points
     Frequency congestion
     Charting issues
     Floor of Class B airspace over the Hudson River
     Change is unnecessary
     East River Class B Exclusion procedures
     Aircraft not equipped with lights or an electrical system
     Class B airspace informal airspace meetings
     Regulatory Evaluation
     Environmental Review
     Other Issues outside the scope of the rule:
     Education and Training
     Teterboro transitions
     Altimeter setting and transponder code
     Enhanced surveillance coverage and aircraft avionics equipage

Discussion of Comments

    Below is a more detailed discussion of the issues raised during the 
comment period.

Definition of ``Local Operation'' and ``Transient Operation'' in the 
Hudson River Class B Exclusion

    Many commenters stated that the NPRM did not clearly define the 
terms ``local area, '' ``overflight'' or ``transient'' operations. 
Several commenters interpreted the term ``local operations'' to mean 
helicopters only.
    The FAA agrees that a clarification of the terms ``local'' and 
``transient'' operations are needed, and the definitions of the terms 
are added to Sec.  93.350.
    The NPRM proposed to modify the floor of the New York Class B 
airspace area over a portion of the Hudson River to provide more 
airspace in the Hudson River Exclusion so that aircraft transiting the 
area are at separate altitudes from aircraft conducting local 
operations.
    The FAA concludes that segregating operations in the Hudson River 
Exclusion by mission profile places similar operations in the same 
airspace, which is operationally preferable because the dynamic 
parameters of these two types of operations are very different. Local 
operations include aircraft landing and departing from the heliports 
and seaplane bases located within the SFRA. In addition, certain local 
aircraft operations require significant changes in altitude, airspeed, 
and/or heading, such as electronic news gathering, police activities, 
emergency medical services and sightseeing operations. Transient 
operations typically fly straight and level. Separating transient 
operations from local operations will enhance safety by standardizing 
the types of operations pilots encounter and providing a buffer between 
dissimilar types of operations, i.e. aircraft flying straight and level 
versus aircraft climbing and descending, circling, or significantly 
changing airspeed.
    The FAA also recognized that the airspace immediately surrounding 
the Statue of Liberty presents a particular challenge to all pilots as 
it is the most heavily trafficked sightseeing destination in the Hudson 
River Exclusion, and the southernmost turn-around point for all local 
helicopter tour routes. This is also the area where many local 
helicopter tour operators will receive ATC clearance to climb into the 
Class B airspace area for the northbound leg of their tours. 
Consequently, all pilots are cautioned to remain especially vigilant 
for other traffic in the vicinity of the Statue of Liberty.
    Pilots can transit the Hudson River Exclusion/SFRA in the airspace 
from 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including, 1,300 feet MSL. Pilots 
transiting the area shall not descend below 1,000 feet MSL. Pilots are 
advised not to climb or descend or make significant heading changes. 
However, this does not preclude pilots from taking action as needed to 
avoid other aircraft. It is the FAA's intention to reserve the 
altitudes from 1,000 feet MSL up to but not including 1,300 feet MSL 
for those aircraft transiting the area without having to obtain a Class 
B airspace clearance. However, transiting pilots must be aware that 
some aircraft may climb through these altitudes from below in order to 
enter Class B airspace after receiving a clearance from ATC. This 
situation is most likely to occur in the vicinity of the Statue of 
Liberty and the Manhattan landing facilities.
    Pilots conducting local area operations should operate below 1,000 
feet MSL while in the SFRA, and they must follow other pertinent 
regulations (e.g., minimum safe altitudes, visibility and cloud 
clearance requirements, and see and avoid). Pilots must also be aware 
that, while operating in this dynamic environment below 1,000 feet

[[Page 59905]]

MSL, they should expect to encounter aircraft that are climbing, 
descending, transitioning to land, making significant heading changes 
or operating at very slow airspeeds. Since local helicopter tour 
operators fly an irregular pattern near the Statue of Liberty at 
approximately 500 feet, other pilots intending to circle the Statue of 
Liberty in the Exclusion are advised to do so at the highest practical 
altitude below 1,000 feet MSL.

Altitude Stratification in the Hudson River Class B Exclusion

    Many commenters disagreed with the proposed altitude structure in 
the Hudson River Exclusion. A number of commenters contend that the 
change would degrade, rather than enhance, safety. Specifically, the 
commenters stated that the 300 foot layer from 1,000 feet MSL up to, 
but not including 1,300 feet MSL was insufficient for use by transiting 
aircraft. Some suggested that a minimum 500-foot altitude block be 
provided for transiting aircraft and that the 1,000-foot floor of the 
transit corridor should be lowered to 800 feet or 900 feet MSL. One 
commenter suggested that all transiting aircraft should do so in Class 
B airspace above the Hudson River Exclusion. Other suggestions 
included: separate altitudes for northbound and southbound transiting 
aircraft; limiting the speed in the transit corridor to 120 knots 
instead of 140 knots; and providing a larger cutout for the Exclusion 
behind the Statue of Liberty so pilots wishing to circle the Statue can 
do so at a higher altitude without entering Class B airspace. Other 
commenters requested that guidance be provided for turn arounds at the 
north and south ends of the Hudson River Exclusion and that fixed-wing 
aircraft should be required to fly south of the Verrazano Bridge before 
turning northbound.
    The FAA believes that the altitude stratification in the Hudson 
River Exclusion will provide more consistent airspace for pilot 
navigation and transit flight than exists within the current Hudson 
River Exclusion configuration. Even though prior to this rule the 
ceiling of the Exclusion varied between 1,100 feet MSL and 1,500 feet 
MSL, as a practical matter, the majority of these pilots were operating 
in this area at 1,000 feet MSL. Therefore, within a significant portion 
of the Exclusion, all aircraft operations (transiting and local) were 
mixed within the airspace 1,100 feet MSL and below.
    This rule requires aircraft that are simply transiting the area to 
do so between the altitudes of 1,000 feet MSL up to, but not including, 
1,300 feet MSL, and this provides more options for aircraft that are 
transiting the Exclusion. This change also moves transiting aircraft 
above the altitudes that are intended for local operations within the 
Exclusion.
    One commenter suggested that all transiting aircraft operations 
should occur in Class B airspace, above the Hudson River Exclusion. 
Transiting aircraft always have the option to request Class B clearance 
from ATC. Separately, one of the non-rulemaking actions the FAA is 
taking concurrent with this rule, is to establish a published VFR 
transition route within the New York Class B airspace area above the 
Hudson River. Similar VFR transition routes exist at other Class B 
airspace locations, including Los Angeles and Phoenix. This new route 
will be depicted on the New York Sectional and Terminal Area Charts. 
Use of the route requires ATC clearance, but it should provide benefits 
including expedited handling, enhanced safety, improved communication 
between the controller and pilot, increased number of aircraft under 
positive control, reduced cockpit workload, and reduction of transiting 
traffic in the Exclusion airspace.
    Another commenter suggested designating separate altitudes for 
northbound and southbound aircraft transiting the Exclusion. The FAA 
considered this suggestion but determined that it would further reduce 
available altitudes for transiting aircraft. The Exclusion is 
sufficiently wide to allow for lateral separation between north and 
southbound aircraft.
    One commenter suggested reducing the maximum speed from 140 knots 
to 120 knots. The 140 knot speed was selected based on its use as a 
recommended practice for many years in the Hudson and East River 
Exclusions. Given the mix of operations that will be occurring below 
1,000 feet MSL, i.e. climbing, descending, significant altitude 
changes, 140 knots has proven to be the maximum speed that safely 
enables all these operations to occur in the same airspace. The FAA did 
not want to exclude any certain category or class of aircraft from 
operating in these areas. A maximum speed of 140 knots would allow 
access by a greater number of different classes while maintaining 
safety. In addition, the FAA notes that 140 knots is the maximum speed 
permitted within the Los Angeles Special Flight Rules Area, and it has 
worked well there. Based on this longstanding practice, the FAA 
believes that 140 knots is appropriate for use in the Exclusions.
    One person asked that the Hudson River Exclusion be expanded behind 
the Statue of Liberty to permit pilots circling the Statue to do so at 
a higher altitude without entering Class B airspace. The FAA considered 
this suggestion, but is unable to adopt it because it would result in 
adverse impact on instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at Newark.
    Other commenters recommended that guidance be provided for aircraft 
turn arounds at the north and south ends of the Hudson River Exclusion 
and that fixed-wing aircraft should be required to fly south of the 
Verrazano Bridge before turning northbound. While these suggestions are 
outside the scope of this final rule, the FAA is developing a training 
program covering operations in the New York City area. The training 
program will include recommended practices such as those suggested 
above.

Separation of Helicopter and Fixed-Wing Traffic

    Several commenters interpreted the term ``local operations'' to 
mean that only helicopters can operate below 1,000 feet MSL in the 
Hudson River Exclusion, and that fixed wing aircraft operations are 
restricted to operate between 1,000 feet MSL up to but not including 
1,300 feet MSL.
    The FAA noted in its task force report that current operations 
within the Hudson River Class B Exclusion include a high level of 
helicopter activity arriving and departing from the Manhattan 
heliports, in addition to extensive local helicopter tour operations. 
Fixed-wing traffic is predominantly comprised of general aviation 
aircraft transiting the New York area either during the en route phase 
of a cross country flight or on local sightseeing flights. The FAA 
considered separate altitudes for different aircraft category within 
this airspace, but did not pursue this option. Prior to this rule, 
there were no specified altitudes for transient aircraft, often placing 
them in the same altitude structure commonly used by local operators. 
Segregating aircraft operations based on mission (transient or local 
operations) will enhance safety. FAA analysis did not support altitude 
stratification within the existing airspace of 1,100 feet MSL and below 
as it could introduce additional risk and have unintended consequences 
by compressing demand into fewer altitude strata.

Position Reports and Reporting Points

    Over 25 comments were received objecting to the proposed 
requirement that pilots operating in the Hudson River Exclusion include 
aircraft color

[[Page 59906]]

when making position reports at the charted mandatory reporting points. 
Among the stated reasons were that the requirement contributes to 
frequency congestion; that it is difficult to clearly distinguish color 
at a distance; and that reporting aircraft color adds little value to 
safety. The FAA agrees with these concerns and has removed aircraft 
color from the position report format in Sec.  93.352(a). In addition, 
the training program being developed will emphasize clear and concise 
position reporting procedures.
    Regarding the selection of reporting points, commenters requested 
that they be clearly visible, identifiable, and aligned with current 
reporting point usage. Some commenters stated that there are too many 
required points and they should be standardized between the Terminal 
Area Chart (TAC) and Helicopter Chart. One individual suggested that a 
new symbol be added to the charts to identify the mandatory reporting 
points.
    In response, the number of mandatory reporting points has been 
reduced to six. These points consist of locations that are already in 
use for the Hudson River Exclusion and will be reflected on both the 
New York Helicopter Route Chart and TAC. They will be clearly 
identified on the charts as mandatory reporting points using standard 
reporting point symbols already familiar to pilots.

Frequency Congestion

    Many commenters identified frequency congestion on the Hudson River 
Exclusion Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF), 123.05, as a major 
concern. The number of users on 123.05, as well as heliport fixed base 
operators (FBO) using the frequency for dispatch information and other 
purposes, affect the ability to use the frequency for position 
reporting and aircraft-to-aircraft coordination. Commenters provided 
several suggestions to alleviate the congestion, including assigning a 
separate frequency for use by transiting aircraft; providing a separate 
frequency for heliport FBO use; assigning a ``corridor'' automatic 
terminal information service (ATIS) frequency for general information 
such as temporary flight restrictions; and limiting the use of the 
frequency to aviation purposes.
    Due to limited frequency spectrum availability, designation of 
additional frequencies as suggested is not possible at this time. An 
effort currently is underway to realign Hudson and East River Exclusion 
frequencies to reduce congestion on 123.05. One step is the future 
change of the Wall Street Heliport frequency to 123.075. In addition, 
the training program being developed will specifically address 
standardization of phraseology for both pilot and FBO communications. 
Information will be included on the aeronautical charts to reflect 
recommended communications procedures.
    Regarding the use of an ATIS for the Exclusions, the purpose of 
ATIS is to provide airport-specific information, rather than general 
geographic advisory information.
    Further, installation of an ATIS would require equipment 
procurement and frequency assignment, which are beyond the scope of 
this rule.
    One commenter requested that a discrete frequency be assigned and 
published on the charts for VFR aircraft wishing to contact LaGuardia 
tower. Contact frequencies for LaGuardia (LGA), Kennedy (JFK), Newark 
(EWR), and Teterboro (TEB) airport traffic control towers are already 
shown on the New York Terminal Area and Helicopter Route charts.

Charting Issues

    Several commenters suggested that the FAA add enhancements to the 
New York aeronautical charts to expand the information available to 
pilots and to include the operating requirements on the charts.
    The FAA agrees, and will publish the same mandatory VFR reporting 
points on both Helicopter Route and TAC Charts; add the VFR Transition 
Route to the Sectional and TAC charts; and provide an expanded 
depiction of the SFRA area on the reverse of the TAC chart. In 
addition, the charts will contain insets specifying the part 93 
operating requirements and sample position reporting phraseology.

Floor of Class B Airspace Over the Hudson River

    Some commenters suggested raising the floor of Class B over the 
Hudson River to 1500 feet or 1600 feet MSL to provide additional 
altitudes in the Hudson River Exclusion. The FAA does not agree with 
these suggestions. The floor of the Class B airspace can not be raised 
above 1300 feet MSL above the Hudson River Exclusion without 
significant adverse impact to IFR operations at LGA and EWR.

Change Is Unnecessary or Premature

    Several commenters stated that the proposed rule changes are 
unnecessary or premature based on the longstanding safety record of 
flight operations in the Hudson River Exclusion. One commenter said 
that the FAA should wait for the NTSB to issue its final report on the 
August 8, 2009, accident before taking action.
    The FAA does not agree. While acknowledging the overall safety 
record of operations in the Hudson River Exclusion, the FAA believes 
that the measures in this rule, along with the other recommendations of 
the FAA (that do not require rulemaking action) are appropriate to 
further enhance the safety of visual flight rules (VFR) flight in the 
Hudson-East River areas. Although the NTSB has not yet issued a final 
report, it has issued five recommendations based on its preliminary 
findings and its concern about the safety of flight in the Hudson River 
Class B Exclusion. The NTSB recommendations are similar to actions 
taken by the FAA. The FAA does not agree that it should delay further 
action pending the release of the NTSB's final report.

East River Class B Exclusion Operating Procedures

    Two commenters opposed the proposed provision that would require 
ATC authorization for certain fixed-wing aircraft VFR flight operations 
in the East River Class B Exclusion. The commenters questioned the 
value to safety and the rationale for requiring ATC control in the East 
River Exclusion while no such requirement applies in the Hudson River 
Exclusion.
    This rule codifies the requirements in NOTAM number 6/3495, which 
has been in effect since October 13, 2006, as a result of a fixed-wing 
aircraft accident in the East River Exclusion. The East River Exclusion 
differs from the Hudson River Exclusion in that, for most of its 
length, it is narrower and provides less maneuvering room for fixed-
wing aircraft than is available in the Hudson River Exclusion. 
Additionally, the north end of the East River Exclusion ``dead-ends'' 
at the boundary of the Class B airspace surface area (west of LGA), 
which can place a pilot in the situation of needing either a course 
reversal, or obtaining ATC clearance to enter Class B airspace to 
proceed further. The Hudson River Exclusion also differs from the East 
River Exclusion by being open at both ends, providing a continuous path 
through the entire area. Therefore, the FAA does not believe that a 
similar requirement exists for the Hudson River Exclusion. For these 
reasons, the FAA believes that the requirement for ATC authorization 
and control in the East River Exclusion, as proposed, is appropriate in 
the interest of safety.

[[Page 59907]]

Aircraft Not Equipped With Lights or Electrical Systems

    One commenter stated that no allowance is made for aircraft that 
are not equipped with external lights to fly the corridor. Another 
commenter said that aircraft without electrical systems should be 
permitted in this airspace.
    It was not the FAA's intent to exclude aircraft without exterior 
lights or electrical systems from the Hudson River Exclusion. The final 
rule is clarified by specifying that aircraft equipped with functioning 
lights must turn on those lights. The use of landing lights is 
recommended.

Class B Airspace Modification Informal Airspace Meetings

    One commenter pointed out that the FAA did not hold an informal 
airspace meeting regarding the proposed change to the New York Class B 
airspace area as required by FAA policy. (See FAA Order 7400.2, 
Procedures for Handling Airspace Matters, paragraph 2-6-3.)
    It is the agency's policy to hold informal airspace meetings as one 
means of informing the public and gathering information regarding Class 
B airspace. In this rule however, only a small portion of the New York 
Class B airspace is being modified, the area over the Hudson River. 
Furthermore, this modification consists of leveling the Class B floor, 
which varied between above 1,100 feet MSL and 1,500 feet MSL. This rule 
uniformly sets the floor at 1,300 feet MSL over the same segment of the 
river. There were no lateral alterations to the airspace and the 
majority of the New York Class B airspace area is not being changed in 
any way by this rule. The FAA saw the need for prompt action to enhance 
flight safety in this area and opted not to hold an informal airspace 
meeting in this case. The FAA concluded that a 30 day comment period 
would best meet the need of gathering public input on this proposal and 
permit this action to move expeditiously. The comment period closed on 
October 16, 2009.
    One commenter questioned whether the Task Force established by the 
FAA was an advisory committee subject to the Federal Advisory Committee 
Act (FACA). The FAA provided notice and a 30-day comment period so that 
all members of the public had opportunity to comment. The FAA believes 
that this process remedies any alleged FACA infractions.
    The FAA did receive one request to extend the comment period, which 
was denied.

Other Issues

    Comments were also received on issues concerning: Education and 
training; Teterboro departure procedures for VFR aircraft; altimeter 
setting and transponder procedures; and enhanced surveillance coverage 
and aircraft avionics equipage (Multilateration, TIS, TCAS, ADS-B). 
These issues are outside of the scope of this rulemaking action. 
However, responses are provided for information.
Education and Training
    Several commenters suggested that the FAA develop an internet-based 
training program covering all aspects of VFR flight in the New York 
SFRA, similar to that produced for the Washington, DC SFRA. The FAA 
agrees and is developing training programs to educate pilots as well as 
air traffic controllers and Fixed Base Operator personnel. One 
commenter opposed a training program as unnecessary and burdensome 
since the appropriate charts will contain sufficient information. The 
FAA does not agree that this training is unnecessary or burdensome. 
Unlike the Washington, DC SFRA training program, the New York SFRA 
training will not be mandatory. It will supplement the information 
provided on the charts and include supplemental recommended practices 
for flight within the SFRA.
Teterboro VFR Transitions
    Commenters recommended that the FAA develop a standard transition 
for fixed-wing VFR aircraft that depart Teterboro (TEB) and request to 
enter the Hudson River Class B Exclusion. The FAA agrees and is 
developing revised ATC procedures to provide guidance for VFR TEB 
departures requesting to enter the Hudson River Exclusion as well as 
separate guidance for VFR departures requesting Class B services.
Altimeter Setting and Transponder Procedures
    Commenters submitted a number of suggestions regarding altimeter 
settings and transponder usage for the SFRA. One commenter requested 
that a radio frequency be provided for broadcasting a standard 
altimeter setting for the Exclusions. Another stated that the FAA 
should mandate the use of the Newark altimeter setting.
    The FAA does not agree with these suggestions. Each of the airports 
bracketing the SFRA (Newark, Teterboro, LaGuardia and Kennedy) has 
published ATIS frequencies that broadcast altimeter settings on a 
continuous basis. Pilots may select the altimeter setting most 
appropriate for their route of flight. Guidance for setting altimeters 
is provided in 14 CFR 91.121.
    One commenter suggested that a standard VFR transponder code be 
assigned to aircraft operating in the SFRA if this would be helpful to 
ATC. The FAA determined that a discrete transponder code for VFR 
flights in the Exclusions would not be useful for ATC. Since aircraft 
operations in the Exclusions are conducted under VFR, ATC services are 
not routinely provided. The FAA does not believe that a discrete code, 
as opposed to the standard 1200 VFR code, would provide any additional 
benefit.
    Another commenter stated that the requirement for a transponder 
will disenfranchise aircraft that are not equipped with an electrical 
system. This rule did not propose any new transponder requirements. 
Regulations governing transponder use in the National Airspace System 
are contained in 14 CFR 91.215. In part, that regulation requires that 
all aircraft operated within 30 nautical miles of an airport listed in 
Appendix D to part 91 (i.e., those airports where Class B airspace has 
been designated) must have an operable transponder with altitude 
reporting capability. The regulation contains specific procedures to 
accommodate aircraft not equipped with an engine-driven electrical 
system (see Sec.  91.215(b)(3)).
 Enhanced Surveillance Coverage and Aircraft Avionics Equipage
    One commenter said the FAA should consider the longer-term 
installation of wide area multilateration technology for the 
``corridor'' and adjacent areas to increase ATC surveillance coverage 
without requiring additional airborne equipment. Others said that 
equipment such as the Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System 
(TCAS), Traffic Information Service (TIS) and Automatic Dependent 
Surveillance--Broadcast (ADS-B) should be used in the Exclusion.
    The FAA is exploring the use of multilateration technology to 
improve surveillance coverage in the SFRA area. This technology 
involves the placement of numerous sensors at a variety of locations to 
achieve improved coverage. This could permit earlier processing of 
conflict alerts and traffic calls for aircraft entering and leaving the 
Class B airspace. However, it will not replace application of ``see and 
avoid'' already in use in the Exclusion.
    The FAA considered requiring the use of TCAS and TIS in the 
Exclusion. However, the following problems were identified:

[[Page 59908]]

     Excessive amount of TCAS/TIS alerts, (common in dense 
traffic areas) causing distractions, increased pilot workload 
detracting from the pilot's primary obligation to ``see and avoid''
     Response to resolution advisories could cause an unwanted 
intrusion into Class B airspace, resulting in possible conflicts.
    Enhanced surveillance coverage and expanded use of systems such as 
TCAS and ADS-B represent longer term initiatives that are outside the 
scope of this rule. However, nothing in this rule precludes the future 
implementation of advanced technology that will enhance the safety of 
the NAS.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d)) requires 
the FAA consider the impact of paperwork and other information 
collection burdens imposed on the public. We have determined there is 
no current or new requirement for information collection associated 
with this amendment.

International Compatibility

    In keeping with U.S. obligations under the Convention on 
International Civil Aviation, it is FAA policy to comply with 
International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Standards and 
Recommended Practices to the maximum extent practicable. The FAA has 
determined that there are no ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices 
that correspond to these regulations.

Regulatory Evaluation, Regulatory Flexibility Determination, 
International Trade Impact Assessment, and Unfunded Mandates Assessment

    Changes to Federal regulations must undergo several economic 
analyses. First, Executive Order 12866 directs that each Federal agency 
shall propose or adopt a regulation only upon a reasoned determination 
that the benefits of the intended regulation justify its costs. Second, 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-354) requires 
agencies to analyze the economic impact of regulatory changes on small 
entities. Third, the Trade Agreements Act (Pub. L. 96-39) prohibits 
agencies from setting standards that create unnecessary obstacles to 
the foreign commerce of the United States. In developing U.S. 
standards, the Trade Act requires agencies to consider international 
standards and, where appropriate, that they be the basis of U.S. 
standards. Fourth, the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 
104-4) requires agencies to prepare a written assessment of the costs, 
benefits, and other effects of proposed or final rules that include a 
Federal mandate likely to result in the expenditure by State, local, or 
tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 
million or more annually (adjusted for inflation with base year of 
1995). This portion of the preamble summarizes the FAA's analysis of 
the economic impacts of this final rule.
    Department of Transportation Order DOT 2100.5 prescribes policies 
and procedures for simplification, analysis, and review of regulations. 
If the expected cost impact is so minimal that a proposed or final rule 
does not warrant a full evaluation, this order permits that a statement 
to that effect and the basis for it be included in the preamble if a 
full regulatory evaluation of the cost and benefits is not prepared. 
Such a determination has been made for this final rule. The reasoning 
for this determination follows.
    This rule merely sets a uniform ceiling in the Hudson River 
Exclusion to facilitate segregation of overflights from local traffic. 
Pilots will self-announce at the reporting points while in the 
Exclusion area. Pilot training regarding this change is voluntary. We 
are incorporating the existing NOTAM restricting certain fixed-wing 
operations in the East River Exclusion Area. Pilots will be required to 
carry current charts, at a cost of $5.25 each. As a result, the cost is 
minimal. For these just discussed facts we received no comments 
regarding our minimal cost determination and we reduced the number of 
reporting points.
    We did receive a comment claiming an increase in cost because of a 
potential increase in noise. As discussed below in the Environmental 
Review there is no increase in noise on communities because the rule 
will not increase operations, and operations are over the Hudson River, 
rather than over communities. Therefore, there is no increase in noise 
cost. The action is categorically excluded from further environmental 
documentation according to Order 1050.1E, ``Environmental Impacts: 
Policies and Procedures,'' in accordance with paragraphs 307a, 311a, 
311j and 312d.
    Therefore, this rule does not change the quantity of flights, nor 
training requirements, continues the existing safety restriction in the 
East River Exclusion Area, chart costs are minimal, and there is no 
increase in the cost of noise. In addition, these changes will improve 
airspace safety. FAA has, therefore, determined that this final rule is 
not a ``significant regulatory action'' as defined in section 3(f) of 
Executive Order 12866, and is not ``significant'' as defined in DOT's 
Regulatory Policies and Procedures.

Regulatory Flexibility Determination

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (Pub. L. 96-354) (RFA) 
establishes ``as a principle of regulatory issuance that agencies shall 
endeavor, consistent with the objectives of the rule and of applicable 
statutes, to fit regulatory and informational requirements to the scale 
of the businesses, organizations, and governmental jurisdictions 
subject to regulation. To achieve this principle, agencies are required 
to solicit and consider flexible regulatory proposals and to explain 
the rationale for their actions to assure that such proposals are given 
serious consideration.'' The RFA covers a wide-range of small entities, 
including small businesses, not-for-profit organizations, and small 
governmental jurisdictions.
    Agencies must perform a review to determine whether a rule will 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. If the agency determines that it will, the agency must 
prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis as described in the RFA.
    However, if an agency determines that a rule is not expected to 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities, section 605(b) of the RFA provides that the head of the 
agency may so certify and a regulatory flexibility analysis is not 
required. The certification must include a statement providing the 
factual basis for this determination, and the reasoning should be 
clear. We agree the rule may well affect a substantial number of small 
entities. However, the FAA has determined this rule will impose only 
minimal cost; therefore there is not a significant economic impact. We 
received no comments changing our minimal cost estimate and no NPRM 
comments disputing our small entity determination. Therefore, I certify 
that this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities.

International Trade Analysis

    The Trade Agreements Act of 1979 (Pub. L. 96-39), as amended by the 
Uruguay Round Agreements Act (Pub. L. 103-465), prohibits Federal 
agencies from establishing any standards or engaging in related 
activities that create unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of 
the United States. Pursuant to these Acts, the establishment of 
standards is not considered unnecessary obstacles to the foreign 
commerce of the United States, so long as the standards have a

[[Page 59909]]

legitimate domestic objective, such as the protection of safety, and do 
not operate in a manner that excludes imports that meet this objective. 
The statute also requires consideration of international standards and, 
where appropriate, that they be the basis for U.S. standards. The FAA 
notes the purpose is to ensure the safety of the American public, and 
has assessed the effects of this rule to ensure it does not exclude 
imports that meet this objective. As a result, this final rule is not 
considered as creating an unnecessary obstacle to foreign commerce.

Unfunded Mandates Assessment

    Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-
4) requires each Federal agency to prepare a written statement 
assessing the effects of any Federal mandate in a proposed or final 
agency rule that may result in an expenditure of $100 million or more 
(in 1995 dollars) in any one year by State, local, and tribal 
governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector; such a mandate 
is deemed to be a ``significant regulatory action.'' The FAA currently 
uses an inflation-adjusted value of $136.1 million in lieu of $100 
million.
    This final rule does not contain such a mandate; therefore, the 
requirements of Title II of the Act do not apply.

Executive Order 13132, Federalism

    The FAA has analyzed this final rule under the principles and 
criteria of Executive Order 13132, Federalism. We determined that this 
action will not have a substantial direct effect on the States, or the 
relationship between the Federal Government and the States, or on the 
distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of 
government, and, therefore, does not have federalism implications.

Environmental Review

    The FAA has reviewed the above described action and determined that 
it is categorically excluded from further environmental documentation 
according to FAA Order 1050.1E, ``Environmental Impacts: Policies and 
Procedures,'' in accordance with paragraphs 307a, 311a, 311j and 312d. 
Additionally, the implementation of this action will not result in any 
extraordinary circumstances in accordance with Order 1050.1E paragraph 
304. A copy of this Declaration is posted in the docket.
    Specifically, in accordance with:
    1. Paragraph 307a, the FAA is implementing these measures to 
respond to the accident over the Hudson River on August 8, 2009, and 
there is no reasonably foreseeable significant long-term adverse effect 
from this action;
    2. Paragraph 311a, the action is to modify Class B airspace;
    3. Paragraph 311j, the action implements procedures to respond to 
accidents with no reasonably foreseeable long-term adverse effects; 
and,
    4. Paragraph 312d, this action supports issuance of regulatory 
documents (issuance of a Final Rule).
    Additionally, in accordance with paragraph 304, there are no 
extraordinary circumstances associated with this action which would 
preclude the use of any of the categorical exclusions listed above. 
This action focuses specifically on helicopters and other aircraft that 
operate utilizing Visual Flight Rule (VFR) conditions above the Hudson 
River and not over any residential areas.
    Therefore it will not:
    1. Have an adverse effect any National Historic Preservation Act 
properties;
    2. Impact properties under section 4(f) of the Department of 
Transportation Act;
    3. Impact resources under the Endangered Species Act;
    4. Cause a division or disruption to an established community;
    5. Cause an increase in congestion of surface transportation;
    6. Have an impact on noise levels of noise-sensitive areas. 
Although the change in altitude is below 3,000 feet MSL, there will be 
no increase in noise over noise sensitive areas because the location of 
the change is over the Hudson River;
    7. Have an impact on air quality;
    8. Have an impact on water quality;
    9. Affect the quality of the human environment that is likely to be 
highly controversial (create a substantial dispute related to the size, 
nature, or effect) on environmental grounds;
    10. Likely to be inconsistent with any Federal, State, Tribal or 
Local laws; and,
    11. Likely to directly or cumulatively create a significant impact 
on the human environment.

Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or 
Use

    The FAA analyzed this final rule under Executive Order 13211, 
Actions Concerning Regulations that Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use (May 18, 2001). We have determined that it is not 
a ``significant energy action'' under the executive order because it is 
not a ``significant regulatory action'' and it is not likely to have a 
significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of 
energy.

Availability of Rulemaking Documents

    You can get an electronic copy of rulemaking documents 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.
    You can also get a copy 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 amendment number or docket number of this 
rulemaking.
    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://DocketsInfo.dot.gov.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

    The Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) of 
1996 requires FAA to comply with small entity requests for information 
or advice about compliance with statutes and regulations within its 
jurisdiction. If you are a small entity and you have a question 
regarding this document, you may contact your local FAA official, or 
the person listed under the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT heading at 
the beginning of the preamble. You can find out more about SBREFA on 
the Internet at http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/rulemaking/sbre_act/.

List of Subjects

14 CFR Part 71

    Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

14 CFR Part 93

    Aircraft flight, Airspace, Aviation safety, Air traffic control, 
Aircraft, Airmen, Airports.

The Amendments

0
In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration 
amends 14 CFR part 71 and 14 CFR part 93 as follows:

[[Page 59910]]

PART 71--DESIGNATION OF CLASS A, B, C, D AND E AIRSPACE AREAS; AIR 
TRAFFIC SERVICE ROUTES; AND REPORTING POINTS

0
1. The authority citation for part 71 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40103, 40113, 40120; E.O. 10854, 
24 FR 9565, 3 CFR, 1959-1963 Comp., p. 389.


Sec.  71.1  [Amended]

0
2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of the FAA Order 
7400.9T, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 27, 
2009 and effective September 15, 2009, is amended as follows:

Paragraph 3000 Class B Airspace

* * * * *

AEA NY B New York, NY [Amended]

* * * * *
Boundaries.

    By removing the descriptions of Area A, Area B, Area D and Area 
E and substituting the following; and by adding a new Area K as 
follows:
    Area A. That airspace extending upward from the surface to and 
including 7,000 feet MSL within an 8-mile radius circle of Kennedy 
(JFK) VORTAC; within a 4-mile radius circle centered at lat. 
40[deg]41'30''N., long. 74[deg]09'59''W.; and within a 6-mile radius 
circle of LaGuardia (LGA) VOR; excluding the airspace within and 
below Areas B, J and K hereinafter described and excluding that 
airspace east of LaGuardia Airport bounded by a line beginning at 
the point of intersection of the LGA VOR/DME 071[deg] radial and the 
6-mile arc of the LGA VOR/DME, thence clockwise along the LGA VOR/
DME 6-mile arc to the LGA 093[deg] radial, thence westerly to the 
intersection of the Clearview Expressway with a line extending from 
the LaGuardia 093[deg] radial 6-mile DME fix to the southern edge of 
Bowne Park; thence to the southern edge of Leavitts Park; thence 
direct to the JFK VORTAC 340[deg] radial 9-mile DME fix; direct to 
the JFK VORTAC 341[deg] radial 10-mile DME fix; thence direct to the 
point of beginning.
    Area B. That airspace extending upward from above 500 feet MSL 
to and including 7,000 feet MSL within an 8-mile radius circle of 
JFK VORTAC south of a line beginning at the intersection of the JFK 
VORTAC 237[deg] radial and the Atlantic Ocean shoreline, thence 
easterly along the shoreline to its intersection with the JFK VORTAC 
125[deg] radial 5-mile DME fix, thence northerly along the 5-mile 
DME arc to and easterly along the JFK VORTAC 94[deg] radial to the 
8-mile radius circle of JFK VORTAC; that airspace within a 6-mile 
radius circle of LGA VOR/DME bounded by a line beginning at the 
intersection of the 6-mile radius circle and the LGA VOR/DME 
039[deg] radial, thence southwesterly along the LGA VOR/DME 039[deg] 
radial to and southerly along the Bronx shoreline to the north 
stanchion of the Throggs Neck Bridge, thence direct to the 
intersection of the LGA VOR/DME 071[deg] radial and the 6-mile 
radius circle of LGA VOR/DME, thence counterclockwise along the 6-
mile radius circle to the point of beginning; and that airspace 
between the 4-mile and the 6.5-mile radii of a circle centered at 
lat. 40[deg]41'30''N., long. 74[deg]09'59''W.; excluding that 
airspace within and below Areas C, J and K hereinafter described.
    Area D. That airspace extending upward from above 1,100 feet MSL 
to and including 7,000 feet MSL within the area between the east and 
west banks of the East River extending from the LGA VOR/DME 6-mile 
arc to the north end of Roosevelt Island.
    Area E. That airspace extending upward from 1,500 feet MSL to 
and including 7,000 feet MSL within the area bounded by a line 
beginning at the intersection of the 20-mile radius circle of JFK 
VORTAC and the JFK VORTAC 208[deg] radial, thence counterclockwise 
along the 20-mile arc to its intersection with the Long Island 
shoreline, thence southwest along the Long Island shoreline to and 
counterclockwise along the 13-mile radius circle of JFK VORTAC to 
and counterclockwise along the 11-mile radius circle of LGA VOR/DME 
to the LGA VOR/DME 351[deg] radial, thence direct to the LGA VOR/DME 
283[deg] radial at the LGA VOR/DME 17-mile DME fix, thence 
counterclockwise along a 10-mile radius circle centered at lat. 
40[deg]41'30''N., long. 74[deg]09'59''W., to its intersection with 
the Colts Neck VORTAC 005[deg] radial, thence direct to the 
intersection of the Colts Neck VORTAC 034[deg] radial and the New 
Jersey shoreline at Sandy Hook, thence south along the New Jersey 
shoreline to the point of beginning; and that airspace within 2 
miles each side of the Newark ILS Runway 4L localizer course, 
extending from the CHESA outer marker to 6 miles southwest of the 
outer marker, excluding that airspace within and below Areas A, B, 
and C previously described; and excluding the airspace within and 
below Areas F, J and K hereinafter described.
    Area K. That airspace extending upward from 1,300 feet MSL, to 
and including 7,000 feet MSL, north of LaGuardia Airport, within the 
area beginning on the west bank of the Hudson River at lat. 
40[deg]57'45''N., long. 73[deg]54'48''W., (near Alpine Tower) thence 
south along the west bank of the Hudson River to intersect the Colts 
Neck VOR/DME 012[deg] radial, thence southwest along the Colts Neck 
012[deg] radial to the Hudson River shoreline, thence south along 
the shoreline to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, thence east along the 
Bridge to the east bank of the Hudson River, thence north along the 
east bank of the Hudson River to lat. 40[deg]38'39''N., long. 
74[deg]02'03''W., thence north along a line drawn direct to the 
southwesternmost point of Governors Island, thence north along a 
line drawn direct to the southwest tip of Manhattan Island, thence 
north along the east bank of the Hudson River to the LGA VOR/DME 11-
mile arc, north of LaGuardia Airport, thence counterclockwise along 
the 11-mile arc to lat. 40[deg]57'54''N., long. 73[deg]54'23''W., 
thence to the point of beginning.
* * * * *

PART 93--SPECIAL AIR TRAFFIC RULES

0
3. The authority citation for part 93 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C 106(g), 40103, 40106, 40109, 40113, 44502, 
44514, 44701, 44719, 46301.


0
4. Add subpart W, consisting of Sec. Sec.  93.350 through 93.353, to 
read as follows:

Subpart W--New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East River 
Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area

Sec.
93.350 Definitions.
93.351 General requirements for operating in the East River and/or 
Hudson River Exclusions.
93.352 Hudson River Exclusion specific operating procedures.
93.353 East River Exclusion specific operating procedures.

Subpart W--New York Class B Airspace Hudson River and East River 
Exclusion Special Flight Rules Area


Sec.  93.350  Definitions.

    For the purposes of this subpart only the following definitions 
apply:
    (a) Local operation. Any aircraft within the Hudson River Exclusion 
that is conducting an operation other than as described in paragraph 
(b) of this section. Local operations include but are not limited to 
operations for sightseeing, electronic news gathering, and law 
enforcement.
    (b) Transient operation. Aircraft transiting the entire length of 
the Hudson River Class B Exclusion, as defined in paragraph (d) of this 
section, from one end to the other.
    (c) New York Class B a