Agency Information Collection; Activity Under OMB Review; Report of Financial and Operating Statistics for Large Certificated Air Carriers

Agency Information Collection; Activity Under OMB Review; Report of Financial and Operating Statistics for Large Certificated Air Carriers

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Federal Register Notice
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Volume 76, Number 128

AGENCY: Research & Innovative Technology Administration (RITA), Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), DOT.

ACTION: Notice.

SUMMARY: In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), this notice announces that the Information Collection Request (ICR) abstracted below is being forwarded to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for extension of currently approved collection. The ICR describes the nature of the information collection and its expected burden. The Federal Register Notice with a 60-day comment period soliciting comments on the following collection of information was published on January 27, 2011 (76 FR 4992). The Bureau of Economic Analysis at the Department of Commerce submitted comments in support of the continuation of the data collection.

DATES: Written comments should be submitted by August 4, 2011.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jeff Gorham, Office of Airline Information, RTS-42, Room E34-414, RITA, BTS, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001, Telephone Number (202) 366-4406, Fax Number (202) 366-3383 or e-mail jeff.gorham@dot.gov.

Comments: Send comments to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, 725-17th Street, NW., Washington, DC 20503, Attention: RITA/BTS Desk Officer.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

OMB Approval No. 2138-0013

Title: Report of Financial and Operating Statistics for Large Certificated Air Carriers.
Form No.: BTS Form 41.
Type Of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.
Respondents:
Large certificated air carriers.
Number of Respondents: 76.
Estimated Time per Response: 4 hours per schedule, an average carrier may submit 90 schedules in one year.
Total Annual Burden: 27,360 hours.
Needs and Uses: Program uses for Form 41 data are as follows:

Mail Rates
The Department of Transportation sets and updates mainline Alaska mail rates based on carrier aircraft operating expense, traffic and operational data. Form 41 cost data, especially fuel costs, terminal expenses, and line haul expenses are used in arriving at rate levels. DOT revises the established rates based on the percentage of unit cost changes in the carriers' operations. These updating procedures have resulted in the carriers receiving rates of compensation that more closely parallel their costs of providing mail service and contribute to the carriers' economic well-being.

Submission of U.S. Carrier Data to ICAO
As a party to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, the United States is obligated to provide the International Civil Aviation Organization with financial and statistical data on operations of U.S. air carriers. Over 99 percent of the data filed with ICAO is extracted from the carriers' Form 41 reports.

Carrier Fitness
Fitness determinations are made for both new entrants and established U.S. domestic carriers proposing a substantial change in operations. A portion of these applications consists of an operating plan for the first year (14 CFR part 204) and an associated projection of revenues and expenses. The carrier's operating costs, included in these projections, are compared against the cost data in Form 41 for a carrier or carriers with the same aircraft type and similar operating characteristics. Such a review validates the reasonableness of the carrier's operating plan.

Form 41 reports, particularly balance sheet reports and cash flow statements play a major role in the identification of vulnerable carriers. Data comparisons are made between current and past periods in order to assess the current financial position of the carrier. Financial trend lines are extended into the future to analyze the continued viability of the carrier. DOT reviews three areas of a carrier's operation: (1) The qualifications of its management team, (2) its disposition to comply with laws and regulations, and (3) its financial posture. DOT must determine whether or not a carrier has sufficient financial resources to conduct its operations without imposing undue risk on the traveling public. Moreover, once a carrier is operating, DOT is required to monitor its continuing fitness.

Senior DOT officials must be kept fully informed as to all current and developing economic issues affecting the airline industry. In preparing financial conditions reports or status reports on a particular airline, financial and traffic data are analyzed. Briefing papers may use the same information.

The Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act of 2002 (44 U.S.C. 3501 note), requires a statistical agency to clearly identify information it collects for non-statistical purposes. BTS hereby notifies the respondents and the public that BTS uses the information it collects under this OMB approval for non-statistical purposes including, but not limited to, publication of both Respondent's identity and its data, submission of the information to agencies outside BTS for review, analysis and possible use in regulatory and other administrative matters.

Issued in Washington, DC, on June 27, 2011.

Anne Suissa,
Director, Office of Airline Information
Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

[FR Doc. 2011–16703 Filed 7-1-11; 8:45 am]

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