Well, I apologize....I'm not familiar with NORAC rules, only GCOR and USOR rules.
Although the way I read your rule quote I still see nothing about occuping the main track, only authorizing train movement.
I guess what I said previously wasn't exactly clear. Should have been, ABS Signals by themselves have to main track authority associated with them. All this talk has me curious, any online versions of the NORAC?
No need to apologize, you raised a valid point that signals may not authorize track occupancy without specific Dispatcher authority.
But, specific to NORAC, Rule 500 "Occupying or fouling ABS territory"
says:"A train must not enter or foul ABS territory without a proceed indication on a controlled signal OR verbal permission of the Dispatcher.."
So, in this case, IF the track is designated that ABS rules (not DCS) rules apply, the signal indication is equivalent to Dispatcher permission.
Rules 251 and 261 (CTC), when designated in the timetable, also say "signal indication will be the authority for train movement". Only where DCS applies is there a specific NORAC requirement for Dispatcher authorization.
The NORAC ABS Rules may be a moot issue. I am not aware of any territory that has ABS signals that is not now designated "DCS" in the timetable.
I tried to find NORAC Rules online and all I see are some study guides but not the full rules. This is probably due to copyright restrictions.
It will be interesting to see what happens to NORAC now that the former Conrail CSX lines have now abandoned NORAC for a consolidated CSX rulebook.