Final Rules on Small Planes, Metro Planning Coming Soon: Foxx

By Stephanie Beasley

Rules that would allow small-plane manufacturers to self-certify that they have met safety standards and also consolidate metropolitan planning organizations will be finalized within the next few days, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said Dec. 14.

The Federal Aviation Administration is completing a final review of a rewrite of regulations outlining the certification process for small private planes. The agency is planning to loosen its oversight to give manufacturers more room to implement new technologies more quickly, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta has said. Huerta said the agency has struggled to keep up with the pace of innovation and the updated regulations will help the most up-to-date plane technologies reach the market more quickly.

The Federal Highway Administration also is expected to release a final rule to unify MPO’s in urban areas so that they can develop transportation plans that meet the needs of entire area. FHWA released a draft of the rule in June. The rule comes at an important time, given discussions about rural-urban divides in the wake of the Nov. 8 election, Foxx said.

“The analogy I would use is, ‘Maybe you have ... a little corner of folks who want to have their own neighborhood association, so they set themselves up, but they’re still actually part of the same neighborhood,’” he told reporters. “Sometimes that can create a challenge in terms of being able to make the kind of higher-level planning possible.”

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Details about the proposed MPO rule are available online:

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