New York

I-Team: Second Gas Company Probed Over Alleged Cheating on Qualification Exams

A second gas contractor in New York is under investigation for alleged cheating on operator qualification exams, according to the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC). 

The PSC says it is looking into whether employees at Bond Brothers had access to portions of the written examinations. Con Edison notified the PSC about the alleged cheating.

In December, a spokesman for Con Edison said the agency received an anonymous tip, along with a copy of actual test questions and the accompanying answers, reportedly used by Bond Brothers employees. Con Edison said the utility has stopped working with Bond Brothers. 

Bond Brothers said it is conducting an internal review and cooperating fully with Con Edison.

"At all times our employees performed tasks for which they were properly trained and qualified," the company told the I-Team. 

News of the Bond Brothers' alleged cheating comes on the heels of a PSC investigation into test cheating involving gas contractor Network Infrastructure. Network Infrastructure has previously denied the allegations.

The PSC sent a letter to utilities announcing a statewide investigation and the suspension of testing by the Northeast Gas Association, which administers and proctors exams. The state is ordering utilities to review contractors to see who had access to answer sheets and to develop a plan to assess completed work. 

City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, who recently helped pass a gas safety bill, says he vows to make sure utilities properly review work that may have been compromised by the alleged cheating. 

Meanwhile, the Northeast Gas Association says it expects to have a new test ready by Jan. 17. 

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