Jet University Flight School Information

The Official Publication of the Jet University Student Alumni Association

HOUSE BILL 3371 AIRLINE SAFETY AND PILOT TRAINING IMPROVEMENT ACT OF 2009 (Passed by house 10/14/09)

H.R.3371

Airline Safety and Pilot Training Improvement Act of 2009 (Engrossed as Agreed to or Passed by House)

 

SEC. 10. FLIGHT CREWMEMBER SCREENING AND QUALIFICATIONS.

    (a) Requirements-
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      (1) RULEMAKING PROCEEDING- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall conduct a rulemaking proceeding to require part 121 air carriers to develop and implement means and methods for ensuring that flight crewmembers have proper qualifications and experience.
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      (2) MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS-
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        (A) PROSPECTIVE FLIGHT CREWMEMBERS- Rules issued under paragraph (1) shall ensure that prospective flight crewmembers undergo comprehensive pre-employment screening, including an assessment of the skills, aptitudes, airmanship, and suitability of each applicant for a position as a flight crewmember in terms of functioning effectively in the air carrier's operational environment.
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        (B) ALL FLIGHT CREWMEMBERS- Rules issued under paragraph (1) shall ensure that, after the date that is 3 years after the date of enactment of this Act, all flight crewmembers--
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          (i) have obtained an airline transport pilot certificate under part 61 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations; and
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          (ii) have appropriate multi-engine aircraft flight experience, as determined by the Administrator.
    (b) Deadlines- The Administrator shall issue--
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      (1) not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, a notice of proposed rulemaking under subsection (a); and
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      (2) not later than 24 months after such date of enactment, a final rule under subsection (a).

SEC. 11. AIRLINE TRANSPORT PILOT CERTIFICATION.

    (a) Rulemaking Proceeding- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall conduct a rulemaking proceeding to amend part 61 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, to modify requirements for the issuance of an airline transport pilot certificate.
    (b) Minimum Requirements- To be qualified to receive an airline transport pilot certificate pursuant to subsection (a), an individual shall--
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      (1) have sufficient flight hours, as determined by the Administrator, to enable a pilot to function effectively in an air carrier operational environment; and
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      (2) have received flight training, academic training, or operational experience that will prepare a pilot, at a minimum, to--
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        (A) function effectively in a multipilot environment;
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        (B) function effectively in adverse weather conditions, including icing conditions;
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        (C) function effectively during high altitude operations;
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        (D) adhere to the highest professional standards; and
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        (E) function effectively in an air carrier operational environment.
    (c) Flight Hours-
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      (1) NUMBERS OF FLIGHT HOURS- The total flight hours required by the Administrator under subsection (b)(1) shall be at least 1,500 flight hours.
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      (2) FLIGHT HOURS IN DIFFICULT OPERATIONAL CONDITIONS- The total flight hours required by the Administrator under subsection (b)(1) shall include sufficient flight hours, as determined by the Administrator, in difficult operational conditions that may be encountered by an air carrier to enable a pilot to operate safely in such conditions.
    (d) Credit Toward Flight Hours- The Administrator may allow specific academic training courses, beyond those required under subsection (b)(2), to be credited toward the total flight hours required under subsection (c). The Administrator may allow such credit based on a determination by the Administrator that allowing a pilot to take specific academic training courses will enhance safety more than requiring the pilot to fully comply with the flight hours requirement.
    (e) Recommendations of Expert Panel- In conducting the rulemaking proceeding under this section, the Administrator shall review and consider the assessment and recommendations of the expert panel to review part 121 and part 135 training hours established by section 7(b) of this Act.
    (f) Deadline- Not later than 36 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall issue a final rule under subsection (a).

SEC. 12. FLIGHT SCHOOLS, FLIGHT EDUCATION, AND PILOT ACADEMIC TRAINING.

    (a) GAO Study- The Comptroller General shall conduct a comprehensive study of flight schools, flight education, and academic training requirements for certification of an individual as a pilot.
    (b) Minimum Contents of Study- The study shall include, at a minimum--
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      (1) an assessment of the Federal Aviation Administration's oversight of flight schools;
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      (2) an assessment of the Administration's academic training requirements in effect on the date of enactment of this Act as compared to flight education provided to a pilot by accredited 2- and 4-year universities;
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      (3) an assessment of the quality of pilots entering the part 121 air carrier workforce from all sources after receiving training from flight training providers, including Aviation Accreditation Board International, universities, pilot training organizations, and the military, utilizing the training records of part 121 air carriers, including consideration of any relationships between flight training providers and air carriers;
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      (4) a comparison of the academic training requirements for pilots in the United States to the academic training requirements for pilots in other countries;
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      (5) a determination and description of any improvements that may be needed in the Administration's academic training requirements for pilots;
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      (6) an assessment of student financial aid and loan options available to individuals interested in enrolling at a flight school for both academic and flight hour training;
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      (7) an assessment of the Federal Aviation Administration's oversight of general aviation flight schools that offer or would like to offer training programs under part 142 of title 14, Code of Federal Regulations; and
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      (8) an assessment of whether compliance with the English speaking requirements applicable to pilots under part 61 of such title is adequately tested and enforced.
    (c) Report- Not later than 120 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report on the results of the study.

SEC. 13. VOLUNTARY SAFETY PROGRAMS.

    (a) Report- Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation of the Senate a report on the aviation safety action program, the flight operational quality assurance program, the line operations safety audit, and the advanced qualification program.
    (b) Contents- The report shall include--
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      (1) a list of--
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        (A) which air carriers are using one or more of the voluntary safety programs referred to in subsection (a); and
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        (B) the voluntary safety programs each air carrier is using;
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      (2) if an air carrier is not using one or more of the voluntary safety programs--
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        (A) a list of such programs the carrier is not using; and
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        (B) the reasons the carrier is not using each such program;
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      (3) if an air carrier is using one or more of the voluntary safety programs, an explanation of the benefits and challenges of using each such program;
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      (4) a detailed analysis of how the Administration is using data derived from each of the voluntary safety programs as safety analysis and accident or incident prevention tools and a detailed plan on how the Administration intends to expand data analysis of such programs;
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      (5) an explanation of--
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        (A) where the data derived from such programs is stored;
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        (B) how the data derived from such programs is protected and secured; and
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        (C) what data analysis processes air carriers are implementing to ensure the effective use of the data derived from such programs;
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      (6) a description of the extent to which aviation safety inspectors are able to review data derived from such programs to enhance their oversight responsibilities;
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      (7) a description of how the Administration plans to incorporate operational trends identified under such programs into the air transport oversight system and other surveillance databases so that such system and databases are more effectively utilized;
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      (8) other plans to strengthen such programs, taking into account reviews of such programs by the Inspector General of the Department of Transportation; and
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      (9) such other matters as the Administrator determines are appropriate.

SEC. 14. ASAP AND FOQA IMPLEMENTATION PLAN.

    (a) Development and Implementation Plan- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall develop and implement a plan to facilitate the establishment of an aviation safety action program and a flight operational quality assurance program by all part 121 air carriers.
    (b) Matters To Be Considered- In developing the plan under subsection (a), the Administrator shall consider--
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      (1) how the Administration can assist part 121 air carriers with smaller fleet sizes to derive benefit from establishing a flight operational quality assurance program;
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      (2) how part 121 air carriers with established aviation safety action and flight operational quality assurance programs can quickly begin to report data into the aviation safety information analysis sharing database; and
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      (3) how part 121 air carriers and aviation safety inspectors can better utilize data from such database as accident and incident prevention tools.
    (c) Report- Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Science, Commerce, and Transportation of the Senate a copy of the plan developed under subsection (a) and an explanation of how the Administration will implement the plan.
    (d) Deadline for Beginning Implementation of Plan- Not later than one year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall begin implementation of the plan developed under subsection (a).

SEC. 15. SAFETY MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS.

    (a) Rulemaking- The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall conduct a rulemaking proceeding to require all part 121 air carriers to implement a safety management system.
    (b) Matters to Consider- In conducting the rulemaking under subsection (a), the Administrator shall consider, at a minimum, including each of the following as a part of the safety management system:
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      (1) An aviation safety action program.
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      (2) A flight operational quality assurance program.
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      (3) A line operations safety audit.
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      (4) An advanced qualification program.
    (c) Deadlines- The Administrator shall issue--
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      (1) not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, a notice of proposed rulemaking under subsection (a); and
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      (2) not later than 24 months after the date of enactment of this Act, a final rule under subsection (a).
    (d) Safety Management System Defined- In this section, the term `safety management system' means the program established by the Federal Aviation Administration in Advisory Circular 120-92, dated June 22, 2006, including any subsequent revisions thereto.

SEC. 16. DISCLOSURE OF AIR CARRIERS OPERATING FLIGHTS FOR TICKETS SOLD FOR AIR TRANSPORTATION.

    Section 41712 of title 49, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
    `(c) Disclosure Requirement for Sellers of Tickets for Flights-
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      `(1) IN GENERAL- It shall be an unfair or deceptive practice under subsection (a) for any ticket agent, air carrier, foreign air carrier, or other person offering to sell tickets for air transportation on a flight of an air carrier to not disclose, whether verbally in oral communication or in writing in written or electronic communication, prior to the purchase of a ticket--
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        `(A) the name (including any business or corporate name) of the air carrier providing the air transportation; and
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        `(B) if the flight has more than one flight segment, the name of each air carrier providing the air transportation for each such flight segment.
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      `(2) INTERNET OFFERS- In the case of an offer to sell tickets described in paragraph (1) on an Internet Web site, disclosure of the information required by paragraph (1) shall be provided on the first display of the Web site following a search of a requested itinerary in a format that is easily visible to a viewer.'.

SEC. 17. PILOT FATIGUE.

    (a) Flight and Duty Time Regulations-
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      (1) IN GENERAL- In accordance with paragraph (3), the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall issue regulations, based on the best available scientific information--
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        (A) to specify limitations on the hours of flight and duty time allowed for pilots to address problems relating to pilot fatigue; and
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        (B) to require part 121 air carriers to develop and implement fatigue risk management plans.
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      (2) MATTERS TO BE ADDRESSED- In conducting the rulemaking proceeding under this subsection, the Administrator shall consider and review the following:
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        (A) Time of day of flights in a duty period.
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        (B) Number of takeoff and landings in a duty period.
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        (C) Number of time zones crossed in a duty period.
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        (D) The impact of functioning in multiple time zones or on different daily schedules.
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        (E) Research conducted on fatigue, sleep, and circadian rhythms.
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        (F) Sleep and rest requirements recommended by the National Transportation Safety Board and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
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        (G) International standards regarding flight schedules and duty periods.
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        (H) Alternative procedures to facilitate alertness in the cockpit.
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        (I) Scheduling and attendance policies and practices, including sick leave.
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        (J) The effects of commuting, the means of commuting, and the length of the commute.
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        (K) Medical screening and treatment.
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        (L) Rest environments.
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        (M) Any other matters the Administrator considers appropriate.
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      (3) DEADLINES- The Administrator shall issue--
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        (A) not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, a notice of proposed rulemaking under subsection (a); and
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        (B) not later than one year after the date of enactment of this Act, a final rule under subsection (a).
    (b) Fatigue Risk Management Plan-
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      (1) SUBMISSION OF FATIGUE RISK MANAGEMENT PLAN BY PART 121 AIR CARRIERS- Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this section, each part 121 air carrier shall submit to the Administrator for review and approval a fatigue risk management plan.
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      (2) CONTENTS OF PLAN- A fatigue risk management plan submitted by a part 121 air carrier under paragraph (1) shall include the following:
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        (A) Current flight time and duty period limitations.
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        (B) A rest scheme that enables the management of fatigue, including annual training to increase awareness of--
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          (i) fatigue;
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          (ii) the effects of fatigue on pilots; and
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          (iii) fatigue countermeasures.
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        (C) Development and use of a methodology that continually assesses the effectiveness of the program, including the ability of the program--
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          (i) to improve alertness; and
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          (ii) to mitigate performance errors.
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      (3) PLAN UPDATES- A part 121 air carrier shall update its fatigue risk management plan under paragraph (1) every 2 years and submit the update to the Administrator for review and approval.
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      (4) APPROVAL-
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        (A) INITIAL APPROVAL OR MODIFICATION- Not later than 9 months after the date of enactment of this section, the Administrator shall review and approve or require modification to fatigue risk management plans submitted under this subsection to ensure that pilots are not operating aircraft while fatigued.
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        (B) UPDATE APPROVAL OR MODIFICATION- Not later than 9 months after submission of a plan update under paragraph (3), the Administrator shall review and approve or require modification to such update.
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      (5) CIVIL PENALTIES- A violation of this subsection by a part 121 air carrier shall be treated as a violation of chapter 447 of title 49, United States Code, for purposes of the application of civil penalties under chapter 463 of that title.
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      (6) LIMITATION ON APPLICABILITY- The requirements of this subsection shall cease to apply to a part 121 air carrier on and after the effective date of the regulations to be issued under subsection (a).
    (c) Effect of Commuting on Fatigue-
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      (1) IN GENERAL- Not later than 60 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall enter into appropriate arrangements with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study of the effects of commuting on pilot fatigue and report its findings to the Administrator.
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      (2) STUDY- In conducting the study, the National Academy of Sciences shall consider--
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        (A) the prevalence of pilot commuting in the commercial air carrier industry, including the number and percentage of pilots who commute;
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        (B) information relating to commuting by pilots, including distances traveled, time zones crossed, time spent, and methods used;
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        (C) research on the impact of commuting on pilot fatigue, sleep, and circadian rhythms;
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        (D) commuting policies of commercial air carriers (including passenger and all-cargo air carriers), including pilot check-in requirements and sick leave and fatigue policies;
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        (E) post-conference materials from the Federal Aviation Administration's June 2008 symposium entitled `Aviation Fatigue Management Symposium: Partnerships for Solutions';
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        (F) Federal Aviation Administration and international policies and guidance regarding commuting; and
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        (G) any other matters as the Administrator considers appropriate.
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      (3) PRELIMINARY FINDINGS- Not later than 90 days after the date of entering into arrangements under paragraph (1), the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to the Administrator its preliminary findings under the study.
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      (4) REPORT- Not later than 6 months after the date of entering into arrangements under paragraph (1), the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to the Administrator a report containing its findings under the study and any recommendations for regulatory or administrative actions by the Federal Aviation Administration concerning commuting by pilots.
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      (5) RULEMAKING- Following receipt of the report of the National Academy of Sciences under paragraph (4), the Administrator shall--
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        (A) consider the findings and recommendations in the report; and
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        (B) update, as appropriate based on scientific data, regulations required by subsection (a) on flight and duty time.
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      (6) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS- There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to carry out this subsection.

SEC.

75.98.17.72