Section 5. Informal Airspace Meeting
This section prescribes the procedures to be followed for informal airspace meetings held before the issuance of a rulemaking or nonrulemaking airspace proposal.
- Informal airspace meetings may be held when the FAA determines there is a need to obtain additional technical information or facts to assist in the development of a proposal prior to the issuance of an NPRM or a nonrulemaking circular. The number of meetings required will be determined by the Service Center office based on the scope of the proposal.
- Informal airspace meetings are mandatory for any planned Class B and/or Class C airspace proposals prior to issuing an NPRM.
Meetings are not required for minor Class B or Class C airspace changes (for example, editorial corrections, ARP updates, etc.). Contact the Rules and Regulations Group if in doubt whether a proposed change requires a meeting.
- Informal airspace meetings are not a decision-making forum. The purpose is to gather additional information to be considered in developing the proposal. These meetings provide interested parties an opportunity to present views, recommendations, and comments on a proposal. All comments received during these meetings will be considered prior to any revision or issuance of a notice of proposed rulemaking.
- At FAA's discretion, an electronic meeting format (such as webinars, podcasts, etc.) may be used to supplement the traditional meeting format. Electronic meetings must provide a method of posting questions and answers that can be viewed by all participants after the meeting. In addition, instructions for participants to submit written comments after the meeting must be included.
- The OSG must submit informal airspace meeting details to the Rules and Regulations Group for preparation of the notice and submission to the Federal Register at least 90 days in advance of the first meeting date. The following meeting information is required:
- A general explanation of the proposed action to enable interested persons to prepare comments prior to the meeting.
- The name, address, and telephone number of the person from whom additional information may be obtained.
- Dates and times of the meeting(s).
- Address(es) of meeting location(s).
- Address for submitting written comments following the meeting(s).
- The Federal Register notice must be published a maximum of 60 days and a minimum of 30 days in advance. The comment closing date will be 30 days after the last meeting date.
- In addition to the Federal Register publication, informal airspace meeting notices must be sent to all known aviation interested persons and groups including, but not limited to, state aviation agencies, Service Center military representatives, national and local offices of aviation organizations, local flight schools, local airport owners, managers and fixed base operators, and local air taxi and charter operators within a 100-mile radius of the primary airport for Class B airspace actions and within a 50-mile radius of the primary airport for Class C airspace actions.
- INFORMAL AIRSPACE MEETING NOTIFICATION PROCEDURES FOR AIRSPACE ACTIONS OTHER THAN CLASS B AND CLASS C
When additional information is needed, or known/anticipated controversy warrants, the above procedures may also be used for informal airspace meetings concerning airport airspace analysis, SUA, or commissioning/decommissioning of navigation aids. Every effort must be made to notify all interested aviation organizations and/or persons and groups that may be affected by the proposed action.
- Service centers are responsible for the preparation and distribution of informal airspace meeting notices for airspace actions other than Class B and C. Meeting notices are not required to be published in the Federal Register. The notice of the meeting should be distributed at least 30 days prior to the meeting date.
- The meeting notice must:
- Explain that the purpose of the meeting is to solicit aeronautical comments regarding the proposal's effect on the use of the navigable airspace.
- Provide a general explanation of the proposed action to enable interested persons to prepare comments prior to the meeting.
- Service centers are encouraged to also make use of electronic media, local newspapers, radio, and television to supplement the dissemination of meeting notices.
Informal airspace meetings should be held at locations and times that provide an opportunity for the public to submit aeronautical comments relative to the proposed action. For larger airspace area proposals, multiple meeting locations and times may be necessary to obtain input from the public over a wider geographic area.
Agenda items will be included in the informal airspace meeting notice. Suggested items include, but are not limited to, meeting procedures, FAA presentation on the proposed airspace action, and an opportunity for public presentations/comments. Only presentations or comments from attendees that concern the proposed action will be accepted.
- Official transcripts or minutes of informal airspace meetings must not be taken or prepared. However, the chairperson must ensure that a memorandum summarizing the discussions and issues raised at the meeting(s) is prepared. A copy of the list of attendees and any written comments submitted at the meeting(s) or during the associated comment period must be attached to the memorandum.
- For airspace actions, a copy of the memorandum and attachments must be included in the OSG recommendation package submitted to the Rules and Regulations Group.