The FAA’s VP of Safety and Technical Training says cheating on FAA air traffic control exams and corruption in the air traffic control hiring process is not his problem. Joseph Teixeira, the FAA administrator in charge of safety standards is also in charge of leading the agency’s technical training and certification of air traffic controllers and technicians. FOX Business uncovered cheating on the air traffic control exam and made public documents which show the FAA’s air traffic control hiring process is flawed. Critics say the new hiring process may put the flying public’s safety at risk as less qualified air traffic control applicants are accepted into the FAA.
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FOX Business called Teixeira on his personal cell phone after the FAA press office refused repeated attempts going back to May 11th to obtain a comment from the FAA on the growing scandal. When asked about the cheating scandal and threat to public safety Teixeira told FOX Business correspondent Adam Shapiro, “I am not able to speak to you. I am really not aware its not my area of expertise it’s not my problem.” The FAA website describes Teixeira’s job as Vice President of Safety and Technical Training as one in which he “…leads the agency’s technical training and certification of air traffic controllers and technicians." FAA critics like Congressman Randy Hultgren (R) Illinois call Teixeira and the FAA’s “arrogance” incredible. Hultgren asks, “How is cheating on an already questionable test that determines who serves in our air traffic control towers not the FAA’s Problem?”
Congress demanded answers from the FAA and earlier this week FAA administrator Michael Huerta announced an internal investigation which critics say was an attempt to white wash and cover up the scandal. Huerta said he was “…troubled by recent news reports alleging possible misconduct…” at the FAA. Congressman Frank LoBiondo, (R) New Jersey who chairs the House Aviation Subcommittee called Huerta’s actions “intentionally incomplete….this is absolutely unacceptable.”
Yesterday the Department of Transportation announced the DOT Inspector General would conduct its own investigation of the FAA and the cheating scandal. It could take more than six months for those investigations to be finished. Hultgren says enough is enough and wants Congress to call Teixeira and other FAA officials to testify during a hearing on the scandal. Hultgren says of the FAA, “Their arrogance amidst such turmoil is a slap in the face of highly qualified (people) who honestly went through the hiring process but were shut out by the FAA.”