This Day in FAA History: June 27th

Full FAA Chronology at this link.
19350627: The Supreme Court of the United States handed down its ruling in the case of Rathbun (Humphrey’s Executor) v. United States–a ruling that was to have a direct effect on the structure of the Civil Aeronautics Authority (see June 23, 1938). The Court held that President Roosevelt had exceeded his power in dismissing William E. Humphrey, a Republican member of the Federal Trade Commission, without assigning a statutory cause. The decision was based on the Court’s finding that the FTC, since it included quasi-legislative functions among its responsibilities, was a creature of Congress; therefore, Congress had been within its powers in specifying by law the basis for removal of appointees. This decision was in contrast to that in the case of Myers v. United States (1926), in which the Court had upheld President Wilson’s dismissal of a postmaster on the ground that the latter was an agent of the presidential power. (See January 12, 1937.)
19390627: President Roosevelt signed the Civilian Pilot Training Act of 1939 into law. The act authorized the Civil Aeronautics Authority to conduct a program for the training of civilian pilots through educational institutions and to prescribe pertinent regulations with the objective of providing sufficient training to prepare a student for a private pilot certificate. The act authorized $5,675,000 to be appropriated for the program during fiscal years 1939 and 1940, and specified that thereafter the appropriation should not exceed $7 million for any one fiscal year. The act was to expire on July 1, 1944. On the basis of this legislation, CAA’s program for the 1939-1940 school year called for training 11,000 civilian pilots, although considerably fewer were actually trained the first year. (See May 16, 1940, and December 12, 1941). In what proved to be an important development for African Americans in aviation, the act contained a provision introduced by Representative Everett M. Dirksen (R-Ill.) stipulating that “none of the benefits of training or programs shall be denied on account of race, creed, or color.”
19510627: CAA demonstrated the Ag-1, the first airplane designed exclusively for agricultural use. The Personal Aircraft Research Center at Texas A. & M. College constructed the plane under CAA contract.
19690627: FAA announced the commissioning of its first Uninterruptible Power System, designed to control power failures and fluctuations that caused errors in high speed data processing equipment and affected radar and communications. Installing this system at the Jacksonville Air Route Traffic Control Center was the initial step in an FAA-wide electric power modernization program for the en route centers. (See November 9-10, 1965, and September 19, 1974.)
19910627: America West Airlines filed for protection under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code. The Phoenix-based carrier had begun operations in August 1983, and was listed as a major airline by 1990. The airline emerged from bankruptcy on August 25, 1994.
19920627: General Thomas C. Richards (USAF, Ret.) became FAA’s twelfth Administrator, succeeding James B. Busey (see June 30, 1989), in a private ceremony. On July 17, Richards took the oath a second time in a public ceremony. President Bush had announced Richards’ nomination on March 31, following the withdrawal of a previous nominee (see entry for November 20, 1991), and formally nominated him on May 1. The Senate confirmed the nomination in June, and Congress passed legislation exempting Richards from the statute barring military officers from serving as FAA Administrator.
Born on February 13, 1930, in San Diego, Calif., Richards received a B.S. from Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1956, an M.A. from Shippensburg State College in 1973, and was also a graduate of the U.S. Army War College. Richards’ military career began with the Army infantry in 1948 and included combat service in the Korean War. He received a commission as a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program at Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1956. He earned his pilot’s wings in 1957. During his Air Force career, he flew over 600 combat missions as a forward air controller in the Vietnam war. His assignments included: commandant of cadets at the Air Force Academy; vice commander, 8th Air Force, Strategic Air Command; commander of the Air University; and deputy commander in chief, U.S. European Command. Upon retiring from the military in 1989, he became a corporate consultant and served on the President’s Commission on Aviation Security and Terrorism (see May 15, 1990). Richards was FAA Administrator for less than seven months, resigning when William J. Clinton succeeded George H. Bush as President on January 20, 1993.
19960627: FAA signed a contract with Northrup Grumman Systems for three full-scale development versions of the Airport Movement Area Safety System (AMASS). The system was designed to provide a visual and aural alert for the display of the Airport Surface Detection Equipment model 3. (See December 3, 1993.)
20130627: The Senate confirmed Charlotte, NC, Mayor Anthony Fox as Secretary of Transportation. He was sworn in during a private ceremony on July 2. Vice President Joe Biden publicly swore him in on July 12. (See May 22, 2013.)
20140627: FAA announced the Republic of Serbia complied with ICAO safety standards and had been granted a Category 1 rating. The Republic of Serbia had held a Category 2 rating since 2006. A Category 2 rating meant a country either lacked laws or regulations necessary to oversee air carriers in accordance with minimum international standards, or that its civil aviation authority was deficient in one or more areas, such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record-keeping, or inspection procedures. The Category 1 status was based on a March 2014 FAA assessment of the safety oversight provided by the Civil Aviation Directorate of the Republic of Serbia, and an FAA verification of necessary corrective actions during a follow-on visit to the Republic of Serbia this month. With the Category 1 rating, the Republic of Serbia’s air carriers, which were able to secure the requisite FAA and DOT authority, could establish service to the United States and carry the code of U.S. carriers. (See April 10, 2014.)