The FAA refused to allow a US regional airline to hire co-pilots with less experience because of a shortage of pilots.

The news was reported by the AP.

Republic Airways, which operates on behalf of American, Delta, and United Airlines, asked the FAA for permission to recruit pilots out of its training academy program with a minimum of 750 hours of total flight time.

Commercial co-pilots must fly for at least 1,500 hours before they can fly for airlines. Military pilots can get less flying hours. The pilot school would "exceed the safety standards" of military aviation training, according to the request.

The FAA disagreed according to the exemption.

According to the denial exemption, the FAA has determined that the relief requested is not in the public interest.

Republic cannot be compared with military training programs according to the FAA. The agency said the argument that Republic's request would address a perceived pilot shortage was overstated.

The airline's request would enhance safety because it would offer student pilots a highly structured, mission-specific training approach, according to the CEO. The FAA's decision was disappointing but not surprising according to him.

The FAA denied a request by Republic Airways to reduce the number of hours it takes to become a co-pilot. The agency determined that the airline's new training program does not provide an equivalent level of safety as the regulation requires 1,500 hours of flight experience before a pilot can work for an airline.

Republic didn't reply immediately to Insider's request for comment.

There is a shortage of pilots and carriers are having a hard time filling their schedules. According to Taylor Rains, airlines are trying to cut training hours because they are so desperate to hire more pilots.