Chapter 1. General


1.5  Background

Delegation is defined as "The "Art" of achieving specific, predefined results through the empowerment and motivation of others". In the context of Aviation, delegation is an essential tool used by Airworthiness Authorities to fulfill their responsibilities in the regulation of the aeronautics industry. Specifically the Minister is empowering certain persons to act on his behalf. These persons or Delegates exercise authority in many different fields of aviation, however, our primary focus will be on those delegations related to the design approval of aeronautical products.

In the past, the Aircraft Certification Branch in Headquarters was solely responsible for Delegation. The responsibility for Delegation is now shared between the Regions and the Aircraft Certification Branch in Headquarters. The Regions have assumed responsibility for Delegates who are primarily involved in the modification and repair of aeronautical products per AWM Chapter 513. The Aircraft Certification Branch (Headquarters) has retained responsibility for Delegates who are primarily involved in the design and manufacture of aeronautical products per AWM 511, and for the appointment and management of all Flight Test Delegates. This division of responsibility aligns with the AWM 511/513 division for certification projects.

The shared responsibility for Delegation has improved response times for applicants requesting Delegation and for existing Delegates requiring extensions to their Delegations. It also places the responsibility for delegation on the TCCA personnel who best know the delegates and their work. The working relationship between the Delegates involved in the modification and repair of aeronautical products and the Regions has also improved as a result.

1.5.1  Legislative Framework For Ministerial Delegation Of Authority

The Aeronautics Act and Canadian Aviation Regulations are the legislative instruments governing Canadian aviation. Section [4.2] of the Aeronautics Act states that the Minister of Transport "is responsible for the development and regulation of aeronautics and the supervision of all matters connected with aeronautics".

To fulfill these responsibilities the Minister is provided with various resources (Transport Canada Civil Act, Section [4.3.(1)], namely:

"The Minister may authorize members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police or any other person to exercise or perform, subject to such restrictions or limitations as the Minister may specify, any of the powers, duties or functions of the Minister under this part except, subject to Subsection (3) any power conferred on the Minister by the Governor in Council to make regulations or orders."

For TCCA and delegates, this refers to AWM Chapter 505, B, C, and E and its advisories. Airworthiness Manual Chapter 505 contains the standards applicable to design approval delegates. Interpretative material DARs. Other interpretive material that is available are the Aircraft Certification Staff Instructions and Aircraft Certification Policy Letters.

The historical perspective of the development of our delegation framework originated in 1968 with NAME-AO 45/68 which introduced the DAR System. The N-AME-AO provided a more structured system for delegation albeit informal. In the early 1980's the Commission of Inquiry into Aviation Safety included in its recommendation the following: "The role and responsibilities of the Design Approval Representatives and the Airworthiness Inspection Representatives should be codified in the Airworthiness Code." This inquiry, conducted by Justice Dubin, recognized the value of these functions and thus recommended that they be formally recognized in the legislation governing aeronautics in Canada. Transport Canada accepted this recommendation, and in its response committed to "amending the Aeronautics Act to provide for the inclusion of Authorization, by the Minister, of persons engaged in the field of Airworthiness". Also the Airworthiness Manual would include the standards for, and the roles and responsibilities of, those persons so authorized to act on behalf of the Minister of Transport. On 28 June 1985, the Aeronautics Act was amended to include specific provisions authorizing the Minister to delegate any of the powers, duties or functions, except the power to make Regulations and Orders. During the development of the airworthiness standards for delegated persons, the DAR concept was expanded and two new categories of corporate delegate were developed: the Airworthiness Engineering Organization (AEO) and the Design Approval Organization (DAO). The concepts were promulgated as a revision to AWM 505. The AEO and DAO replaced the "company DAR" category from N-AME-AO 45/68, and introduced the concept that the corporation is the delegate and is responsible for having adequate resources to support and maintain the delegation. Although the corporation is the Delegate individuals are still required to carry out the authorized functions.

1.5.2  Basis for Delegate Authorization and Role

AWM 505 sets out procedures and conditions under which an applicant may obtain a delegation of authority that may be exercised by a Design Approval Representative, Designated Engineer, a DAO, or an AEO.

The role of the delegate has been consistent since it was first introduced, namely:

Acting as a representative of the Minister of Transport, the DAR determines, or participates in the determination, that an aeronautical product design, or parts thereof, complies with airworthiness standards.

When accomplishing this task the delegate uses the same standards, procedures and interpretations applicable to Transport Canada employees accomplishing similar tasks. The delegate is also required to observe all conditions and limitations imposed by the Minister on the authority delegated. The level of investigation conducted by the delegate is the same irrespective of whether the delegate is finding compliance on behalf of the Minister, or submitting the data to Transport Canada with a recommendation with respect to compliance.

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