FAA regulations that would impose numerous new requirements on air-tour operators are one step closer to publication. The rulemaking, proposed in October 2003, is now under review at the Office of Management and Budget. That review and approval is the last step before the FAA can publish a final rule.
According to a DOT report last month on significant rulemakings, the FAA is not expected to complete until January its work on a November 2003 proposal to require all air-tour operators to be certified under either Part 135 or 121. It is likely that the significant number of objections the FAA received from the public and members of Congress is responsible for the delays the proposal has encountered.
Repair stations would be required to establish a quality-rating program under a notice of proposed rulemaking the FAA expects to publish next month. The new rules would revise the current ratings system and require shops to “establish a quality program.” Repair stations would be required to maintain a capability list, designate a chief inspector and have permanent housing for facilities, equipment, materials and personnel.