Port Authority Makes A Questionable Hire

The Port Authority has been known to make their share of questionable decisions. Their most recent qualifies as another one as they hired a former MTA Executive who was fined for taking illegal gifts. This comes on the heels of the Port Authority’s General Inspector recommended he not be hired. Tom Topousis of the New York Post has the story:

A former MTA executive who was fined $10,000 for taking gifts from a contractor doing business with the agency has landed a consulting job at the Port Authority to provide engineering advice at the World Trade Center, The Post has learned.

Joseph Siano, formerly a vice president of MTA Capital Construction, was retained as a consultant this month by the PA after that agency’s inspector general recommended he should not be hired, a source said.

Siano resigned from the MTA in April 2005 after the state Ethics Commission determined he inappropriately accepted a $2,500 ticket to a fund-raiser and $350 in golf and dinner expenses from construction firm DMJM.

The firm has several contracts with the MTA, including design of the Second Avenue subway line, which Siano oversaw.

A PA spokesman said Siano is being paid $115 an hour in consulting fees. A statement from the PA insisted “the highest safety, integrity and ethical standards are in place at the World Trade Center site.”

Siano “will have an arms-length relationship with DMJM,” the statement continued.

DMJM is under contract with the PA to design the WTC transit hub.

You see these are types of decisions made by agencies that showcase why they do not do what is best for the overall picture. Why would you even consider hiring someone who was fined for taking illegal gifts, much less when they will have some sort of working relationship with the company that provided them in the first place? This smells like a back room deal which are never good in the long run.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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