Restrictions on Operators Employing Former Flight Standards Service Aviation Safety Inspectors, 52231-52237 [2011-21315]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations Issued in College Park, Georgia, on August 9, 2011. Mark D. Ward, Manager, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Air Traffic Organization. SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone 202–267–3073; e-mail Paul.G.Greer@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: [FR Doc. 2011–21284 Filed 8–19–11; 8:45 am] Authority for This Rulemaking BILLING CODE 4910–13–P The FAA’s authority to issue rules on aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator, to include the authority to issue, rescind, and revise regulations. 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, chapter 447, Safety Regulation. Under section 44701(a) the FAA is charged with promoting the safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations and minimum standards for other practices, methods, and procedures necessary for safety in air commerce and national security. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Parts 91, 119, 125, 133, 137, 141, 142, 145, and 147 [Docket No. FAA–2008–1154; Amendment Nos. 91–325, 119–5, 125–61, 133–14, 137– 16, 141–16, 142–8, 145–29, and 147–7] RIN 2120–AJ36 Restrictions on Operators Employing Former Flight Standards Service Aviation Safety Inspectors Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: I. Background This rule will prohibit any person holding a certificate from knowingly employing, or making a contractual arrangement with, certain individuals to act as an agent or a representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the FAA under certain conditions. These restrictions will apply if the individual, in the preceding 2-year period directly served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service Aviation Safety Inspector, and had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. This rule will also apply to persons who own or manage fractional ownership program aircraft that are used to conduct operations under specific regulations described in this document. This rule will establish these restrictions to prevent potential organizational conflicts of interest which could adversely affect aviation safety. DATES: Effective Date: This amendment becomes effective October 21, 2011. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical questions concerning this final rule, contact Nancy Lauck Claussen, Federal Aviation Administration, Air Transportation Division, AFS–200, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone (202) 267–8166; e-mail Nancy.L.Claussen@faa.gov. For legal questions concerning this final rule, contact Paul G. Greer, Federal Aviation Administration, Office of the Chief Counsel, 800 Independence Avenue, mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:10 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 On March 5, 2008, the FAA proposed a $10.2 million civil penalty against a major airline for operating 46 airplanes without performing mandatory inspections for fuselage fatigue cracking. The FAA alleged that the airline operated 46 Boeing 737 airplanes on almost 60,000 flights from June 2006 to March 2007 while failing to comply with an existing FAA Airworthiness Directive (AD) that required repetitive inspections of certain fuselage areas to detect fatigue cracking. Based on this event, on June 30, 2008, the Department of Transportation (DOT) Office of Inspector General issued a report on its review of the FAA’s oversight of airlines and use of regulatory partnership programs. The report concluded that the FAA Certificate Management Office (CMO) overseeing the airline that failed to perform the required inspections had developed an overly collaborative relationship with the airline. The report recommended that the FAA should enhance management controls by implementing post-employment guidance that includes a ‘‘cooling-off’’ period to prohibit an air carrier from hiring an FAA Flight Standards Service Aviation Safety Inspector (AFS ASI) who previously inspected that air carrier from acting in any type of liaison capacity between it and the FAA. A full copy of the report is contained in the docket for this rulemaking. On September 2, 2008, an independent review team, appointed by former Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters on May 1, 2008 to examine the PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 52231 FAA’s safety culture and its implementation of safety management systems, issued its report titled, ‘‘Managing Risks in Civil Aviation: A Review of the FAA’s Approach to Safety.’’ The report stated that ‘‘[t]he FAA, like all other regulators, faces the danger of regulatory capture. Capture occurs when a regulatory agency draws so close to those with whom it deals on a daily basis (i.e. the regulated) that the agency ends up elevating their concerns at the expense of the agency’s core mission.’’ A full copy of the report may be found in the docket for this rulemaking. A. Summary of the NPRM The NPRM was published in the Federal Register on November 20, 2009 (74 FR 60218) and the comment period closed on February 18, 2010. The NPRM proposed to prohibit any person holding a certificate to conduct operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 145 or 147 from knowingly employing, or making a contractual arrangement with, certain individuals to act as an agent or a representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the FAA under certain conditions. These restrictions would apply if the individual, in the preceding 2-year period: (1) Directly served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, an AFS ASI; and (2) had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. The NPRM also proposed to apply to persons who own or manage fractional ownership program aircraft that are used to conduct operations under subpart K of part 91. The FAA proposed to establish these restrictions to prevent potential organizational conflicts of interest which could adversely affect aviation safety. B. Discussion of the Comments The FAA received five comments on the proposed rule, all from individual commenters. The FAA did not receive comments from airlines, trade associations, or labor organizations. The three adverse comments addressed the applicability of the rule, and the potential burdens the rule could create. Two comments expressed support for the rule. Commenters also suggested changes, as discussed more fully in this section. 1. Applicability of Employment Prohibition to Additional FAA Employees Two individual commenters stated that the provisions in the proposed rule should be expanded to include FAA E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES 52232 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations regional and headquarters personnel. They commented that individuals in regional and headquarters positions exert power and influence and should also be covered by the provisions in the rule. Another individual noted the challenge of trying to regulate integrity and that, using the same justification as stated in the NPRM, all former FAA employees should never be allowed to become FAA Designees, such as Designated Engineering Representatives, Designated Airworthiness Representatives, Designated Manufacturing Inspection Representatives, Organizational Designated Airworthiness Representatives. In the final rule, the FAA has limited the scope of employment restrictions to certain types of operations. The restrictions will apply to those persons conducting operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 145, 147, and subpart K of part 91 employing former FAA personnel who had oversight responsibilities for the operator [e.g. Office Managers, Assistant Office Managers, Branch Managers, Unit Supervisors, and Aviation Safety Inspectors assigned to a Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) or a CMO]. AFS ASIs directly engaged in certificate management typically develop close working relationships with other AFS ASIs with whom they share direct oversight responsibilities for a particular operator. The FAA believes that aviation safety could be compromised if a former AFS ASI, acting on behalf of the operator, is able to exert undue influence on current FAA employees with whom he or she had established close working relationships while working at a FSDO or a CMO. In the final rule the FAA has not extended the restrictions to the employment of all former FAA regional and headquarters personnel. However, these individuals are not without restrictions regarding post-FAA employment, as there are currently restrictions that apply to FAA managers and executives. Section 207(a)(1) of Title 18, United States Code (18 U.S.C.) generally places a permanent restriction on former executive branch employees (including FAA employees) regarding their ability to represent a person in connection with a particular matter in which the United States government has a direct and substantial interest and in which that person participated personally and substantially. The FAA has determined that the scope of the restrictions in the final rule is appropriate. FAA employees not directly engaged in certificate VerDate Mar<15>2010 18:50 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 management typically do not develop those close working relationships that the agency believes would necessitate the imposition of post-employment restrictions on certificate holders set forth in this final rule. Operators can still employ former AFS ASIs in numerous positions. However, these former AFS ASIs may not represent the operator in any matter before the FAA if in the preceding 2-year period that person (1) directly served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of an AFS ASI, and (2) had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of that operator. Although a commenter stated that the rule should impose restrictions that would prohibit former FAA employees from becoming designees, FAA designees do not represent the interest of certificate holders, but rather serve as representatives of the Administrator. Additionally, the NPRM did not propose the establishment of such restrictions and the agency considers the comments to be outside the scope of the notice. 2. Burden on Former AFS Employees One commenter stated that the provisions in the proposed rule create a hardship for FAA employees who are leaving the agency, and suggested that the restriction on employment be reduced to 6 months, instead of the proposed 2 years. The same commenter also suggested that the restriction not be applied to anyone who was fired or has retired, and also suggested that the restriction be limited to part 121 operators since the FAA has no data indicating that this action is warranted for certificate holders engaged in activities under other parts. The FAA selected a 2-year period for the duration of this restriction. This regulation will mirror a corresponding requirement found in current AFS policy which provides for a 2-year ‘‘cooling off’’ period for newly employed AFS ASIs. This AFS policy prohibits new ASIs from having certificate management responsibilities for their former aviation employer during this 2-year period. The final rule will not change this longstanding FAA policy. It will, however, create a corresponding requirement applicable to operators who seek to employ certain former FAA AFS ASIs and those responsible for their oversight. In response to the comment that the restriction not be applied to anyone who was fired or has retired, the FAA notes that the method by which an AFS ASI’s employment is terminated does not have any bearing on potential conflicts of interest. Therefore, the restrictions PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 apply regardless of the manner by which the AFS ASI terminates his or her employment with the agency. In response to the comment that the provisions in the rule should be limited to part 121 certificate holders the FAA notes that close working relationships leading to potential conflicts of interest can occur regardless of the type of operation being conducted. Therefore, the FAA has determined these restrictions should apply to those persons conducting operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 145, and subpart K of part 91. 3. Necessity for Proposed Restrictions Two commenters stated that the proposed rule is necessary. One individual commented that a former AFS ASI should not be able to work directly for the companies that were under the AFS ASI’s oversight for 2 years, but should be able to work for companies that were not under the AFS ASI’s oversight. A second individual commented that airlines should not be allowed to hire aviation safety inspectors because it is clearly a conflict of interest and a danger to passengers. The FAA recognizes the adverse safety effects of ‘‘regulatory capture’’ and conflict of interest when certain former FAA employees leave the FAA and are employed by an operation for which that person formerly had oversight duties. However, the FAA is also required to evaluate the safety benefits of the final rule against potential regulatory burdens. To achieve the safety benefits of this final rule, the FAA does not find it necessary to prohibit a former FAA employee from being hired for positions such as a pilot, flight attendant, mechanic, training instructor, etc. for an operation for which they formally had oversight, as long as the former FAA employee does not represent that operator to the FAA. In addition, the FAA does not find it necessary to permanently bar a former FAA employee from any job for any aviation employer after that former FAA employee has completed a 2-year ‘‘cooling off’’ period. Therefore, in the final rule, these restrictions would only apply if the individual, in the preceding 2-year period: Directly served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, an AFS ASI; and had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspections of the operator and that individual acts as an agent or a representative of the operator in any matter before the FAA. The restrictions would not apply to operators for whose oversight the AFS ASI was not directly responsible. E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations C. Summary of the Final Rule This final rule will prohibit any person holding a certificate to conduct operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 145, or 147 from knowingly employing, or making a contractual arrangement with, certain individuals to act as an agent or a representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the FAA under certain conditions. These restrictions will apply if the individual, in the preceding 2-year period: directly served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, an AFS ASI; and had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. This final rule will also apply to persons who own or manage fractional ownership program aircraft that are used to conduct operations under subpart K of part 91. This final rule will establish these restrictions to prevent potential organizational conflicts of interests which could adversely affect aviation safety. The final rule is identical to the proposal. II. Paperwork Reduction Act The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d)) requires that the FAA consider the impact of paperwork and other information collection burdens imposed on the public. The FAA has determined that there is no new requirement for information collection associated with this final rule. III. International Compatibility In keeping with U.S. obligations under the Convention on International Civil Aviation, it is FAA policy to conform to 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. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES IV. Regulatory Notices and Analyses A. Regulatory Evaluation 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 VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:10 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 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 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 to 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 rule. The reasoning for this determination follows: Who Will Be Potentially Affected by This Final Rule This final rule will affect current and future AFS ASIs and persons responsible for their oversight who would perform work after the effective date of the rule for an operator for which they had direct oversight responsibilities when employed by the FAA. It will also affect operators that would have hired former FAA employees who had direct oversight responsibilities for those operators. Finally, this rule will apply to fractional owners or fractional ownership program managers who conduct operations under subpart K of part 91. Potential Benefits and Costs The final rule’s primary benefit will be to prevent potential organizational conflicts of interest. The nonquantifiable benefits resulting from this effect will be to minimize any potential public perception that: (1) An AFS ASI could compromise current aviation safety if that individual were to be promised post-FAA employment by an operator over which that individual has direct oversight responsibilities; and (2) a former FAA employee working for an operator were to attempt to exert undue influence on current FAA employees with whom that former employee had PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 52233 established close working relationships. This post-employment prohibition also applies to the more likely case of former AFS ASIs who would become consultants to the operator. By prohibiting such relationships, the public will have greater confidence in the FAA’s independence from the aviation industry and in the integrity of the FAA inspection system. Such benefits from this increased public confidence in the integrity of the FAA inspection process cannot be quantified. The final rule also creates some minor inefficiencies. An operator can benefit from employing a former AFS ASI who had direct oversight responsibilities for that operator because that AFS ASI not only knows more about FAA processes than someone who had not worked for the FAA, but also, would know more about the operator than other former AFS ASIs. Further, a former AFS ASI from a specific FSDO or CMO will have greater knowledge about that office (as well as be better acquainted with the people in that office) than would a former AFS ASI from a different office. For example, some operators may believe that employing a former AFS ASI who recently had direct oversight responsibilities for their operations would reduce the time to obtain FAA approval for manual upgrades and revisions partially due to the personal relationships between the former AFS ASI and current FAA employees. In such a case, an operator would be more likely to employ this former AFS ASI than to employ a former AFS ASI who did not have direct oversight responsibilities for that operator. Due to the general similarities among the groups of operators, the potential inefficiencies from employing a former AFS ASI who did not have direct oversight responsibilities for that operator will not be significant. Thus, from the societal point of view, the overall losses to some individual former FAA inspectors will be largely offset by gains to other former FAA inspectors or other qualified personnel. Although the final rule will create income transfers among individuals, at this time, we cannot quantify this overall loss on an individual basis. From a societal basis, the safety differential paid for the incremental loss in knowledge will be very small. We received no public comments quantifying the amount of losses that any individual will face from this rule. The number of former AFS ASIs who leave the FAA varies from year to year. We used fiscal year 2008 (October 1, 2008, through September 30, 2009), as a representative year-long period to evaluate the number of potentially E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1 52234 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations affected FAA employees. There were a total of 163 AFS ASIs who left FAA employment during this fiscal year. Fifteen of these were from FAA headquarters and not specifically assigned to a certificate holder. These AFS ASIs would not have been affected by the rule. As shown in Table 1, of the remaining 148 inspectors who left FAA employment, 103 voluntarily retired, 5 retired due to disability, 17 resigned, 1 was removed, 6 were terminated during their probation period, 2 had their appointments terminated, and 14 died. Thus, the maximum number of former inspectors who could have been affected had the rule been in effect are the 125 non-headquarters personnel who retired (voluntarily or with disability) or resigned. TABLE 1—REASONS THAT THE 148 NON–HEADQUARTERS INSPECTORS LEFT FAA EMPLOYMENT BETWEEN 10/1/08 AND 9/30/09 Reason for separation Number of inspectors VOLUNTARY RETIREMENT DISABILITY RETIREMENT .. RESIGNATION ..................... REMOVAL ............................ TERMINATION DURING PROBATION PERIOD ...... TERMINATION OF APPOINTMENT ..................... DEATH .................................. 103 5 17 1 TOTAL .................................. 148 6 2 14 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES As concluded in the NPRM, we stated that few of these former AFS ASIs will become involved in post-FAA retirement employment. We further stated that this overall economic impact will be minimal, with the potential benefits exceeding the costs. We requested comments on this economic analysis and received none. Although the overall economic impact will be minimal, with the potential benefits exceeding the costs this rule is considered a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ for other reasons as defined in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 and is ‘‘significant’’ as defined in DOT’s Regulatory Policies and Procedures. B. 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. VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:10 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 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 widerange 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. The final rule will only prevent an AFS ASI and persons responsible for their oversight from acting as an agent or representative of an operator before the FAA when those persons had direct oversight responsibilities for that operator in the preceding two years. The cost to an operator of being unable to employ a specific individual will be minimal because other individuals with similar professional qualifications as those possessed by the former AFS ASI will be available. Therefore the FAA certifies that this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. C. 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 $140.8 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. V. 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 PO 00000 Frm 00022 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government, and, therefore, will not have federalism implications. VI. Environmental Analysis FAA Order 1050.1E identifies FAA actions that are categorically excluded from preparation of an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement under the National Environmental Policy Act in the absence of extraordinary circumstances. The FAA has determined this final rulemaking action qualifies for the categorical exclusion identified in paragraph 312f and involves no extraordinary circumstances. VII. 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). The agency has determined that it is not a ‘‘significant energy action’’ under the executive order and it is not likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. VIII. Availability of Rulemaking Documents A. Rulemaking Documents An electronic copy of a rulemaking document my be obtained by using the Internet— 1. Search the Federal eRulemaking Portal (http://www.regulations.gov); 2. Visit the FAA’s Regulations and Policies Web page at http:// www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/ or 3. Access the Government Printing Office’s Web page at http:// www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/index.html. Copies may also be obtained by sending a request (identified by notice, amendment, or docket number of this rulemaking) to the Federal Aviation Administration, Office of Rulemaking, ARM–1, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591, or by calling (202) 267–9680. B. Comments Submitted to the Docket Comments received may be viewed by going to http://www.regulations.gov and following the online instructions to search the docket number for this action. Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received into any of the FAA’s dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations 52235 comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). § 91.1050 Employment of former FAA employees. § 119.73 Employment of former FAA employees. IX. 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. A small entity with questions regarding this document, may contact its local FAA official, or the person listed under the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT heading at the beginning of the preamble. To find out more about SBREFA on the Internet, visit http:// www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/ rulemaking/sbre_act/. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager before October 21, 2011. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no certificate holder conducting operations under part 121 or 135 of this chapter may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. List of Subjects 14 CFR Part 91 Aircraft, Airmen, Airports, Aviation safety. 14 CFR Part 119 Air carriers, Aircraft, Aviation safety. 14 CFR Part 125 Aircraft, Aviation safety. 14 CFR Part 133 Aircraft, Aviation safety. 14 CFR Part 137 Aircraft, Aviation safety. 14 CFR Part 141 Educational facilities, Schools. 14 CFR Part 142 Educational facilities, Schools. 14 CFR Part 145 Aircraft, Aviation safety. 14 CFR Part 147 Aircraft, Educational facilities, Schools. The Amendment In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends Chapter I of Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, as follows: PART 91—GENERAL OPERATING AND FLIGHT RULES 1. The authority citation for part 91 continues to read as follows: PART 119—CERTIFICATION: AIR CARRIERS AND COMMERCIAL OPERATORS mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES ■ ■ 2. Add § 91.1050 to read as follows: VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:10 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 3. The authority citation for part 119 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 1155, 40103, 40113, 40120, 44101, 44111, 44701, 44704, 44709, 44711, 44712, 44715, 44716, 44717, 44722, 46306, 46315, 46316, 46504, 46506– 46507, 47122, 47508, 47528–47531, articles 12 and 29 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (61 Stat. 1180). Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 1153, 40101, 40102, 40103, 40113, 44105, 44106, 44111, 44701–44717, 44722, 44901, 44903, 44904, 44906, 44912, 44914, 44936, 44938, 46103, 46105. ■ 4. Add § 119.73 to read as follows: PO 00000 Frm 00023 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 PART 125—CERTIFICATION AND OPERATIONS: AIRPLANES HAVING A SEATING CAPACITY OF 20 OR MORE PASSENGERS OR A MAXIMUM PAYLOAD CAPACITY OF 6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH AIRCRAFT 5. The authority citation for part 125 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701– 44702, 44705, 44710–44711, 44713, 44716– 44717, 44722. ■ 6. Add § 125.26 to read as follows: § 125.26 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no certificate holder may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1 52236 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. PART 133—ROTORCRAFT EXTERNALLOAD OPERATIONS 7. The authority citation for part 133 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701– 44702. ■ 8. Add § 133.22 to read as follows: mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES § 133.22 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no certificate holder may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:10 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. PART 137—AGRICULTURAL AIRCRAFT OPERATIONS 9. The authority citation for part 137 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40103, 40113, 44701–44702. ■ 10. Add § 137.40 to read as follows: § 137.40 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no certificate holder may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate holder from knowingly employing or making a PO 00000 Frm 00024 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. PART 141—PILOT SCHOOLS 11. The authority citation for part 141 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701– 44703, 44707, 44709, 44711, 45102–45103, 45301–45302. ■ 12. Add § 141.34 to read as follows: § 141.34 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder of a pilot school certificate or a provisional pilot school certificate may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of a pilot school certificate or a provisional pilot school certificate from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. PART 142—TRAINING CENTERS 13. The authority citation for part 142 continues to read as follows: ■ E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 162 / Monday, August 22, 2011 / Rules and Regulations Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 40119, 44101, 44701–44703, 44705, 44707, 44709– 44711, 45102–45103, 45301–45302. ■ 14. Add § 142.14 to read as follows: § 142.14 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder of a training center certificate may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of a training center certificate from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. PART 145—REPAIR STATIONS 15. The authority citation for part 145 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701– 44702, 44707, 44709, 44717. ■ 16. Add § 145.160 to read as follows: mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with RULES § 145.160 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder of a repair station certificate may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:10 Aug 19, 2011 Jkt 223001 Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of a repair station certificate from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. 52237 agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector. (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of an aviation maintenance technician school certificate from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 2011. Issued in Washington, DC, on August 5, 2011. J. Randolph Babbitt, Administrator. [FR Doc. 2011–21315 Filed 8–19–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration PART 147—AVIATION MAINTENANCE TECHNICIAN SCHOOLS 14 CFR Part 97 17. The authority citation for part 147 continues to read as follows: Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous Amendments ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701– 44702, 44707–44709. 18. Add § 147.8 to subpart A to read as follows: ■ § 147.8 Employment of former FAA employees. (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder of an aviation maintenance technician certificate may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years— (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations of the certificate holder. (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate holder in a matter before the PO 00000 Frm 00025 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 [Docket No. 30798; Amdt. No. 3439] Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final Rule. AGENCY: This rule establishes, amends, suspends, or revokes Standard Instrument Approach Procedures (SIAPs) and associated Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures for operations at certain airports. These regulatory actions are needed because of the adoption of new or revised criteria, or because of changes occurring in the National Airspace System, such as the commissioning of new navigational facilities, adding new obstacles, or changing air traffic requirements. These changes are designed to provide safe and efficient use of the navigable airspace and to promote safe flight operations under instrument flight rules at the affected airports. SUMMARY: This rule is effective August 22, 2011. The compliance date for each DATES: E:\FR\FM\22AUR1.SGM 22AUR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 162 (Monday, August 22, 2011)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 52231-52237]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-21315]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Parts 91, 119, 125, 133, 137, 141, 142, 145, and 147

[Docket No. FAA-2008-1154; Amendment Nos. 91-325, 119-5, 125-61, 133-
14, 137-16, 141-16, 142-8, 145-29, and 147-7]
RIN 2120-AJ36


Restrictions on Operators Employing Former Flight Standards 
Service Aviation Safety Inspectors

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: This rule will prohibit any person holding a certificate from 
knowingly employing, or making a contractual arrangement with, certain 
individuals to act as an agent or a representative of the certificate 
holder in any matter before the FAA under certain conditions. These 
restrictions will apply if the individual, in the preceding 2-year 
period directly served as, or was directly responsible for the 
oversight of, a Flight Standards Service Aviation Safety Inspector, and 
had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the 
operations of the certificate holder. This rule will also apply to 
persons who own or manage fractional ownership program aircraft that 
are used to conduct operations under specific regulations described in 
this document. This rule will establish these restrictions to prevent 
potential organizational conflicts of interest which could adversely 
affect aviation safety.

DATES: Effective Date: This amendment becomes effective October 21, 
2011.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical questions concerning 
this final rule, contact Nancy Lauck Claussen, Federal Aviation 
Administration, Air Transportation Division, AFS-200, 800 Independence 
Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone (202) 267-8166; e-mail 
Nancy.L.Claussen@faa.gov. For legal questions concerning this final 
rule, contact Paul G. Greer, Federal Aviation Administration, Office of 
the Chief Counsel, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591; 
telephone 202-267-3073; e-mail Paul.G.Greer@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Authority for This Rulemaking

    The FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety is found in 
Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, section 106 describes 
the authority of the FAA Administrator, to include the authority to 
issue, rescind, and revise regulations. 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, chapter 447, Safety Regulation. Under section 
44701(a) the FAA is charged with promoting the safe flight of civil 
aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations and minimum 
standards for other practices, methods, and procedures necessary for 
safety in air commerce and national security.

I. Background

    On March 5, 2008, the FAA proposed a $10.2 million civil penalty 
against a major airline for operating 46 airplanes without performing 
mandatory inspections for fuselage fatigue cracking. The FAA alleged 
that the airline operated 46 Boeing 737 airplanes on almost 60,000 
flights from June 2006 to March 2007 while failing to comply with an 
existing FAA Airworthiness Directive (AD) that required repetitive 
inspections of certain fuselage areas to detect fatigue cracking.
    Based on this event, on June 30, 2008, the Department of 
Transportation (DOT) Office of Inspector General issued a report on its 
review of the FAA's oversight of airlines and use of regulatory 
partnership programs. The report concluded that the FAA Certificate 
Management Office (CMO) overseeing the airline that failed to perform 
the required inspections had developed an overly collaborative 
relationship with the airline. The report recommended that the FAA 
should enhance management controls by implementing post-employment 
guidance that includes a ``cooling-off'' period to prohibit an air 
carrier from hiring an FAA Flight Standards Service Aviation Safety 
Inspector (AFS ASI) who previously inspected that air carrier from 
acting in any type of liaison capacity between it and the FAA. A full 
copy of the report is contained in the docket for this rulemaking.
    On September 2, 2008, an independent review team, appointed by 
former Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters on May 1, 2008 to 
examine the FAA's safety culture and its implementation of safety 
management systems, issued its report titled, ``Managing Risks in Civil 
Aviation: A Review of the FAA's Approach to Safety.'' The report stated 
that ``[t]he FAA, like all other regulators, faces the danger of 
regulatory capture. Capture occurs when a regulatory agency draws so 
close to those with whom it deals on a daily basis (i.e. the regulated) 
that the agency ends up elevating their concerns at the expense of the 
agency's core mission.'' A full copy of the report may be found in the 
docket for this rulemaking.

A. Summary of the NPRM

    The NPRM was published in the Federal Register on November 20, 2009 
(74 FR 60218) and the comment period closed on February 18, 2010. The 
NPRM proposed to prohibit any person holding a certificate to conduct 
operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 145 or 147 
from knowingly employing, or making a contractual arrangement with, 
certain individuals to act as an agent or a representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the FAA under certain 
conditions. These restrictions would apply if the individual, in the 
preceding 2-year period: (1) Directly served as, or was directly 
responsible for the oversight of, an AFS ASI; and (2) had direct 
responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations 
of the certificate holder. The NPRM also proposed to apply to persons 
who own or manage fractional ownership program aircraft that are used 
to conduct operations under subpart K of part 91. The FAA proposed to 
establish these restrictions to prevent potential organizational 
conflicts of interest which could adversely affect aviation safety.

B. Discussion of the Comments

    The FAA received five comments on the proposed rule, all from 
individual commenters. The FAA did not receive comments from airlines, 
trade associations, or labor organizations. The three adverse comments 
addressed the applicability of the rule, and the potential burdens the 
rule could create. Two comments expressed support for the rule. 
Commenters also suggested changes, as discussed more fully in this 
section.
1. Applicability of Employment Prohibition to Additional FAA Employees
    Two individual commenters stated that the provisions in the 
proposed rule should be expanded to include FAA

[[Page 52232]]

regional and headquarters personnel. They commented that individuals in 
regional and headquarters positions exert power and influence and 
should also be covered by the provisions in the rule. Another 
individual noted the challenge of trying to regulate integrity and 
that, using the same justification as stated in the NPRM, all former 
FAA employees should never be allowed to become FAA Designees, such as 
Designated Engineering Representatives, Designated Airworthiness 
Representatives, Designated Manufacturing Inspection Representatives, 
Organizational Designated Airworthiness Representatives.
    In the final rule, the FAA has limited the scope of employment 
restrictions to certain types of operations. The restrictions will 
apply to those persons conducting operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 
135, 137, 141, 142, 145, 147, and subpart K of part 91 employing former 
FAA personnel who had oversight responsibilities for the operator [e.g. 
Office Managers, Assistant Office Managers, Branch Managers, Unit 
Supervisors, and Aviation Safety Inspectors assigned to a Flight 
Standards District Office (FSDO) or a CMO]. AFS ASIs directly engaged 
in certificate management typically develop close working relationships 
with other AFS ASIs with whom they share direct oversight 
responsibilities for a particular operator. The FAA believes that 
aviation safety could be compromised if a former AFS ASI, acting on 
behalf of the operator, is able to exert undue influence on current FAA 
employees with whom he or she had established close working 
relationships while working at a FSDO or a CMO.
    In the final rule the FAA has not extended the restrictions to the 
employment of all former FAA regional and headquarters personnel. 
However, these individuals are not without restrictions regarding post-
FAA employment, as there are currently restrictions that apply to FAA 
managers and executives. Section 207(a)(1) of Title 18, United States 
Code (18 U.S.C.) generally places a permanent restriction on former 
executive branch employees (including FAA employees) regarding their 
ability to represent a person in connection with a particular matter in 
which the United States government has a direct and substantial 
interest and in which that person participated personally and 
substantially.
    The FAA has determined that the scope of the restrictions in the 
final rule is appropriate. FAA employees not directly engaged in 
certificate management typically do not develop those close working 
relationships that the agency believes would necessitate the imposition 
of post-employment restrictions on certificate holders set forth in 
this final rule. Operators can still employ former AFS ASIs in numerous 
positions. However, these former AFS ASIs may not represent the 
operator in any matter before the FAA if in the preceding 2-year period 
that person (1) directly served as, or was directly responsible for the 
oversight of an AFS ASI, and (2) had direct responsibility to inspect, 
or oversee the inspection of that operator.
    Although a commenter stated that the rule should impose 
restrictions that would prohibit former FAA employees from becoming 
designees, FAA designees do not represent the interest of certificate 
holders, but rather serve as representatives of the Administrator. 
Additionally, the NPRM did not propose the establishment of such 
restrictions and the agency considers the comments to be outside the 
scope of the notice.
2. Burden on Former AFS Employees
    One commenter stated that the provisions in the proposed rule 
create a hardship for FAA employees who are leaving the agency, and 
suggested that the restriction on employment be reduced to 6 months, 
instead of the proposed 2 years. The same commenter also suggested that 
the restriction not be applied to anyone who was fired or has retired, 
and also suggested that the restriction be limited to part 121 
operators since the FAA has no data indicating that this action is 
warranted for certificate holders engaged in activities under other 
parts.
    The FAA selected a 2-year period for the duration of this 
restriction. This regulation will mirror a corresponding requirement 
found in current AFS policy which provides for a 2-year ``cooling off'' 
period for newly employed AFS ASIs. This AFS policy prohibits new ASIs 
from having certificate management responsibilities for their former 
aviation employer during this 2-year period. The final rule will not 
change this longstanding FAA policy. It will, however, create a 
corresponding requirement applicable to operators who seek to employ 
certain former FAA AFS ASIs and those responsible for their oversight.
    In response to the comment that the restriction not be applied to 
anyone who was fired or has retired, the FAA notes that the method by 
which an AFS ASI's employment is terminated does not have any bearing 
on potential conflicts of interest. Therefore, the restrictions apply 
regardless of the manner by which the AFS ASI terminates his or her 
employment with the agency.
    In response to the comment that the provisions in the rule should 
be limited to part 121 certificate holders the FAA notes that close 
working relationships leading to potential conflicts of interest can 
occur regardless of the type of operation being conducted. Therefore, 
the FAA has determined these restrictions should apply to those persons 
conducting operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 
145, and subpart K of part 91.
3. Necessity for Proposed Restrictions
    Two commenters stated that the proposed rule is necessary. One 
individual commented that a former AFS ASI should not be able to work 
directly for the companies that were under the AFS ASI's oversight for 
2 years, but should be able to work for companies that were not under 
the AFS ASI's oversight. A second individual commented that airlines 
should not be allowed to hire aviation safety inspectors because it is 
clearly a conflict of interest and a danger to passengers.
    The FAA recognizes the adverse safety effects of ``regulatory 
capture'' and conflict of interest when certain former FAA employees 
leave the FAA and are employed by an operation for which that person 
formerly had oversight duties. However, the FAA is also required to 
evaluate the safety benefits of the final rule against potential 
regulatory burdens. To achieve the safety benefits of this final rule, 
the FAA does not find it necessary to prohibit a former FAA employee 
from being hired for positions such as a pilot, flight attendant, 
mechanic, training instructor, etc. for an operation for which they 
formally had oversight, as long as the former FAA employee does not 
represent that operator to the FAA. In addition, the FAA does not find 
it necessary to permanently bar a former FAA employee from any job for 
any aviation employer after that former FAA employee has completed a 2-
year ``cooling off'' period.
    Therefore, in the final rule, these restrictions would only apply 
if the individual, in the preceding 2-year period: Directly served as, 
or was directly responsible for the oversight of, an AFS ASI; and had 
direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspections of the 
operator and that individual acts as an agent or a representative of 
the operator in any matter before the FAA. The restrictions would not 
apply to operators for whose oversight the AFS ASI was not directly 
responsible.

[[Page 52233]]

C. Summary of the Final Rule

    This final rule will prohibit any person holding a certificate to 
conduct operations under parts 121, 125, 133, 135, 137, 141, 142, 145, 
or 147 from knowingly employing, or making a contractual arrangement 
with, certain individuals to act as an agent or a representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the FAA under certain 
conditions. These restrictions will apply if the individual, in the 
preceding 2-year period: directly served as, or was directly 
responsible for the oversight of, an AFS ASI; and had direct 
responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection of, the operations 
of the certificate holder. This final rule will also apply to persons 
who own or manage fractional ownership program aircraft that are used 
to conduct operations under subpart K of part 91. This final rule will 
establish these restrictions to prevent potential organizational 
conflicts of interests which could adversely affect aviation safety. 
The final rule is identical to the proposal.

II. Paperwork Reduction Act

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

III. International Compatibility

    In keeping with U.S. obligations under the Convention on 
International Civil Aviation, it is FAA policy to conform to 
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.

IV. Regulatory Notices and Analyses

A. Regulatory Evaluation

    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 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 to 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 rule. The reasoning for 
this determination follows:
Who Will Be Potentially Affected by This Final Rule
    This final rule will affect current and future AFS ASIs and persons 
responsible for their oversight who would perform work after the 
effective date of the rule for an operator for which they had direct 
oversight responsibilities when employed by the FAA. It will also 
affect operators that would have hired former FAA employees who had 
direct oversight responsibilities for those operators. Finally, this 
rule will apply to fractional owners or fractional ownership program 
managers who conduct operations under subpart K of part 91.
Potential Benefits and Costs
    The final rule's primary benefit will be to prevent potential 
organizational conflicts of interest. The non-quantifiable benefits 
resulting from this effect will be to minimize any potential public 
perception that: (1) An AFS ASI could compromise current aviation 
safety if that individual were to be promised post-FAA employment by an 
operator over which that individual has direct oversight 
responsibilities; and (2) a former FAA employee working for an operator 
were to attempt to exert undue influence on current FAA employees with 
whom that former employee had established close working relationships. 
This post-employment prohibition also applies to the more likely case 
of former AFS ASIs who would become consultants to the operator. By 
prohibiting such relationships, the public will have greater confidence 
in the FAA's independence from the aviation industry and in the 
integrity of the FAA inspection system. Such benefits from this 
increased public confidence in the integrity of the FAA inspection 
process cannot be quantified.
    The final rule also creates some minor inefficiencies. An operator 
can benefit from employing a former AFS ASI who had direct oversight 
responsibilities for that operator because that AFS ASI not only knows 
more about FAA processes than someone who had not worked for the FAA, 
but also, would know more about the operator than other former AFS 
ASIs. Further, a former AFS ASI from a specific FSDO or CMO will have 
greater knowledge about that office (as well as be better acquainted 
with the people in that office) than would a former AFS ASI from a 
different office.
    For example, some operators may believe that employing a former AFS 
ASI who recently had direct oversight responsibilities for their 
operations would reduce the time to obtain FAA approval for manual 
upgrades and revisions partially due to the personal relationships 
between the former AFS ASI and current FAA employees. In such a case, 
an operator would be more likely to employ this former AFS ASI than to 
employ a former AFS ASI who did not have direct oversight 
responsibilities for that operator. Due to the general similarities 
among the groups of operators, the potential inefficiencies from 
employing a former AFS ASI who did not have direct oversight 
responsibilities for that operator will not be significant. Thus, from 
the societal point of view, the overall losses to some individual 
former FAA inspectors will be largely offset by gains to other former 
FAA inspectors or other qualified personnel. Although the final rule 
will create income transfers among individuals, at this time, we cannot 
quantify this overall loss on an individual basis. From a societal 
basis, the safety differential paid for the incremental loss in 
knowledge will be very small. We received no public comments 
quantifying the amount of losses that any individual will face from 
this rule.
    The number of former AFS ASIs who leave the FAA varies from year to 
year. We used fiscal year 2008 (October 1, 2008, through September 30, 
2009), as a representative year-long period to evaluate the number of 
potentially

[[Page 52234]]

affected FAA employees. There were a total of 163 AFS ASIs who left FAA 
employment during this fiscal year. Fifteen of these were from FAA 
headquarters and not specifically assigned to a certificate holder. 
These AFS ASIs would not have been affected by the rule. As shown in 
Table 1, of the remaining 148 inspectors who left FAA employment, 103 
voluntarily retired, 5 retired due to disability, 17 resigned, 1 was 
removed, 6 were terminated during their probation period, 2 had their 
appointments terminated, and 14 died. Thus, the maximum number of 
former inspectors who could have been affected had the rule been in 
effect are the 125 non-headquarters personnel who retired (voluntarily 
or with disability) or resigned.

   TABLE 1--Reasons That the 148 Non-Headquarters Inspectors Left FAA
                 Employment Between 10/1/08 and 9/30/09
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                             Number of
                  Reason for separation                     inspectors
------------------------------------------------------------------------
VOLUNTARY RETIREMENT....................................             103
DISABILITY RETIREMENT...................................               5
RESIGNATION.............................................              17
REMOVAL.................................................               1
TERMINATION DURING PROBATION PERIOD.....................               6
TERMINATION OF APPOINTMENT..............................               2
DEATH...................................................              14
                                                         ---------------
TOTAL...................................................             148
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As concluded in the NPRM, we stated that few of these former AFS 
ASIs will become involved in post-FAA retirement employment. We further 
stated that this overall economic impact will be minimal, with the 
potential benefits exceeding the costs. We requested comments on this 
economic analysis and received none.
    Although the overall economic impact will be minimal, with the 
potential benefits exceeding the costs this rule is considered a 
``significant regulatory action'' for other reasons as defined in 
section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 and is ``significant'' as defined 
in DOT's Regulatory Policies and Procedures.

B. 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.
    The final rule will only prevent an AFS ASI and persons responsible 
for their oversight from acting as an agent or representative of an 
operator before the FAA when those persons had direct oversight 
responsibilities for that operator in the preceding two years. The cost 
to an operator of being unable to employ a specific individual will be 
minimal because other individuals with similar professional 
qualifications as those possessed by the former AFS ASI will be 
available. Therefore the FAA certifies that this final rule will not 
have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities.

C. 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 $140.8 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.

V. 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, on the 
relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the 
distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of 
government, and, therefore, will not have federalism implications.

VI. Environmental Analysis

    FAA Order 1050.1E identifies FAA actions that are categorically 
excluded from preparation of an environmental assessment or 
environmental impact statement under the National Environmental Policy 
Act in the absence of extraordinary circumstances. The FAA has 
determined this final rulemaking action qualifies for the categorical 
exclusion identified in paragraph 312f and involves no extraordinary 
circumstances.

VII. 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). The agency has determined that it 
is not a ``significant energy action'' under the executive order and it 
is not likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, 
distribution, or use of energy.

VIII. Availability of Rulemaking Documents

A. Rulemaking Documents

    An electronic copy of a rulemaking document my be obtained by using 
the Internet--
    1. Search the Federal eRulemaking Portal (http://www.regulations.gov);
    2. Visit the FAA's Regulations and Policies Web page at http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/ or
    3. Access the Government Printing Office's Web page at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/index.html.
    Copies may also be obtained by sending a request (identified by 
notice, amendment, or docket number of this rulemaking) to the Federal 
Aviation Administration, Office of Rulemaking, ARM-1, 800 Independence 
Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591, or by calling (202) 267-9680.

B. Comments Submitted to the Docket

    Comments received may be viewed by going to http://www.regulations.gov and following the online instructions to search the 
docket number for this action. Anyone is able to search the electronic 
form of all comments received into any of the FAA's dockets by the name 
of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the

[[Page 52235]]

comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor 
union, etc.).

IX. 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. A small entity with questions regarding this document, 
may contact its local FAA official, or the person listed under the FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT heading at the beginning of the preamble. 
To find out more about SBREFA on the Internet, visit http://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/rulemaking/sbre_act/.

List of Subjects

14 CFR Part 91

    Aircraft, Airmen, Airports, Aviation safety.

14 CFR Part 119

    Air carriers, Aircraft, Aviation safety.

14 CFR Part 125

    Aircraft, Aviation safety.

14 CFR Part 133

    Aircraft, Aviation safety.

14 CFR Part 137

    Aircraft, Aviation safety.

14 CFR Part 141

    Educational facilities, Schools.

14 CFR Part 142

    Educational facilities, Schools.

14 CFR Part 145

    Aircraft, Aviation safety.

14 CFR Part 147

    Aircraft, Educational facilities, Schools.

The Amendment

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation 
Administration amends Chapter I of Title 14, Code of Federal 
Regulations, as follows:

PART 91--GENERAL OPERATING AND FLIGHT RULES

0
1. The authority citation for part 91 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 1155, 40103, 40113, 40120, 44101, 
44111, 44701, 44704, 44709, 44711, 44712, 44715, 44716, 44717, 
44722, 46306, 46315, 46316, 46504, 46506-46507, 47122, 47508, 47528-
47531, articles 12 and 29 of the Convention on International Civil 
Aviation (61 Stat. 1180).

0
2. Add Sec.  91.1050 to read as follows:


Sec.  91.1050  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no 
fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager may knowingly 
employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to 
act as an agent or representative of the fractional owner or fractional 
ownership program manager in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the fractional owner or fractional ownership 
program manager.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a fractional 
owner or fractional ownership program manager in a matter before the 
agency if the individual makes any written or oral communication on 
behalf of the fractional owner or fractional ownership program manager 
to the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with 
a particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a fractional 
owner or fractional ownership program manager from knowingly employing 
or making a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act 
as an agent or representative of the fractional owner or fractional 
ownership program manager in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual was employed by the fractional owner 
or fractional ownership program manager before October 21, 2011.

PART 119--CERTIFICATION: AIR CARRIERS AND COMMERCIAL OPERATORS

0
3. The authority citation for part 119 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 1153, 40101, 40102, 40103, 40113, 
44105, 44106, 44111, 44701-44717, 44722, 44901, 44903, 44904, 44906, 
44912, 44914, 44936, 44938, 46103, 46105.


0
4. Add Sec.  119.73 to read as follows:


Sec.  119.73  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no 
certificate holder conducting operations under part 121 or 135 of this 
chapter may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which 
permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate 
holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement 
which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder 
before October 21, 2011.

PART 125--CERTIFICATION AND OPERATIONS: AIRPLANES HAVING A SEATING 
CAPACITY OF 20 OR MORE PASSENGERS OR A MAXIMUM PAYLOAD CAPACITY OF 
6,000 POUNDS OR MORE; AND RULES GOVERNING PERSONS ON BOARD SUCH 
AIRCRAFT

0
5. The authority citation for part 125 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701-44702, 44705, 44710-
44711, 44713, 44716-44717, 44722.


0
6. Add Sec.  125.26 to read as follows:


Sec.  125.26  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no 
certificate holder may knowingly employ or make a contractual 
arrangement which permits

[[Page 52236]]

an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate 
holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the 
individual, in the preceding 2 years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate 
holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement 
which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder 
before October 21, 2011.

PART 133--ROTORCRAFT EXTERNAL-LOAD OPERATIONS

0
7. The authority citation for part 133 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701-44702.


0
8. Add Sec.  133.22 to read as follows:


Sec.  133.22  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no 
certificate holder may knowingly employ or make a contractual 
arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or 
representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the 
Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 
years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate 
holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement 
which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder 
before October 21, 2011.

PART 137--AGRICULTURAL AIRCRAFT OPERATIONS

0
9. The authority citation for part 137 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40103, 40113, 44701-44702.


0
10. Add Sec.  137.40 to read as follows:


Sec.  137.40  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no 
certificate holder may knowingly employ or make a contractual 
arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent or 
representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the 
Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 
years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a certificate 
holder from knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement 
which permits an individual to act as an agent or representative of the 
certificate holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation 
Administration if the individual was employed by the certificate holder 
before October 21, 2011.

PART 141--PILOT SCHOOLS

0
11. The authority citation for part 141 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701-44703, 44707, 44709, 
44711, 45102-45103, 45301-45302.


0
12. Add Sec.  141.34 to read as follows:


Sec.  141.34  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder 
of a pilot school certificate or a provisional pilot school certificate 
may knowingly employ or make a contractual arrangement which permits an 
individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate 
holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the 
individual, in the preceding 2 years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of a 
pilot school certificate or a provisional pilot school certificate from 
knowingly employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits 
an individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate 
holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the 
individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 
2011.

PART 142--TRAINING CENTERS

0
13. The authority citation for part 142 continues to read as follows:


[[Page 52237]]


    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 40119, 44101, 44701-44703, 
44705, 44707, 44709-44711, 45102-45103, 45301-45302.


0
14. Add Sec.  142.14 to read as follows:


Sec.  142.14  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder 
of a training center certificate may knowingly employ or make a 
contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent 
or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the 
Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 
years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of a 
training center certificate from knowingly employing or making a 
contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent 
or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the 
Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the 
certificate holder before October 21, 2011.

PART 145--REPAIR STATIONS

0
15. The authority citation for part 145 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701-44702, 44707, 44709, 
44717.


0
16. Add Sec.  145.160 to read as follows:


Sec.  145.160  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder 
of a repair station certificate may knowingly employ or make a 
contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent 
or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the 
Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the preceding 2 
years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of a 
repair station certificate from knowingly employing or making a 
contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as an agent 
or representative of the certificate holder in any matter before the 
Federal Aviation Administration if the individual was employed by the 
certificate holder before October 21, 2011.

PART 147--AVIATION MAINTENANCE TECHNICIAN SCHOOLS

0
17. The authority citation for part 147 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701-44702, 44707-44709.


0
18. Add Sec.  147.8 to subpart A to read as follows:


Sec.  147.8  Employment of former FAA employees.

    (a) Except as specified in paragraph (c) of this section, no holder 
of an aviation maintenance technician certificate may knowingly employ 
or make a contractual arrangement which permits an individual to act as 
an agent or representative of the certificate holder in any matter 
before the Federal Aviation Administration if the individual, in the 
preceding 2 years--
    (1) Served as, or was directly responsible for the oversight of, a 
Flight Standards Service aviation safety inspector; and
    (2) Had direct responsibility to inspect, or oversee the inspection 
of, the operations of the certificate holder.
    (b) For the purpose of this section, an individual shall be 
considered to be acting as an agent or representative of a certificate 
holder in a matter before the agency if the individual makes any 
written or oral communication on behalf of the certificate holder to 
the agency (or any of its officers or employees) in connection with a 
particular matter, whether or not involving a specific party and 
without regard to whether the individual has participated in, or had 
responsibility for, the particular matter while serving as a Flight 
Standards Service aviation safety inspector.
    (c) The provisions of this section do not prohibit a holder of an 
aviation maintenance technician school certificate from knowingly 
employing or making a contractual arrangement which permits an 
individual to act as an agent or representative of the certificate 
holder in any matter before the Federal Aviation Administration if the 
individual was employed by the certificate holder before October 21, 
2011.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on August 5, 2011.
J. Randolph Babbitt,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2011-21315 Filed 8-19-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P