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August 24, 2012
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Unspent Federal Earmark Funds Available for Other Projects

The Obama Administration announced Aug. 17 that it is making available $473 million to states in unspent funds for surface transportation infrastructure projects—money originally earmarked in appropriations from Fiscal Year 2003 to FY 2006.  While the president has vowed to veto any new bill that comes to his desk with earmarks and would support legislation to permanently ban them, he noted that these funds were already appropriated and thus should be distributed. [More]

» Loudoun County, VA, is looking for a transportation director. [More]
» Los Angeles Metro has ann opening for a deputy executive officer. [More]
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Transport for London Puts Forth an Olympic Effort

The 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London have recently concluded, with the focus throughout on the athletes. But a strong supporting “team” was Transport for London (TfL), which provided Tube (subway), light rail, and “regular” rail to and from the Olympic events. In fact, these components of the public transportation network carried more people to and from Olympic venues than at any other time in their respective histories. [More]


DOT Releases Updated Nationwide Geographic Databases for 2012

DOT’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, recently released the 2012 edition of the National Transportation Atlas Databases (NTAD), featuring updated datasets from last year’s NTAD. [More]

Sound Transit Breaks Ground on Northgate Link Light Rail Extension

Sound Transit in Seattle joined its partners and members of the community to break ground Aug. 17 on the biggest Sound Transit 2 construction project to date: the 4.3-mile Northgate Link light rail extension, which will run from Husky Stadium to stations serving the University District, Roosevelt, and Northgate. [More]

CUTA Creates Advocacy Video and Campaign

As part of a national grassroots advocacy campaign for public transportation systems in Canada, the Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA) has created a video titled Let’s Talk Public Transit. The purpose of the video is to demonstrate the impact on federal investments in public transit. [More]

Barry Is New CT DOT Deputy Commissioner

Connecticut DOT has announced that Anna M. Barry, senior director of vehicle engineering and quality assurance for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) in Boston, will join the department in September as its deputy commissioner.
 In this position, Barry will fill the role of chief operating officer and support the commissioner in implementing the strategy and goals for the agency. [More]

MTI Offers Course for Bus Operator Awareness

The Mineta Transportation Institute has released the Bus Operator Awareness Research and Development Training Program. It is available for download at the institute’s website[More]

ABC Companies Acquires TMC

ABC Companies, based in Faribault, MN, has acquired the assets of TMC Group Inc., a manufacturer of small and medium-size buses in Elkhart, IN. [More]


Meet Rosa Navejar!

This is the latest in an ongoing series of columns showcasing APTA members.
The subject of this profile is Rosa Navejar, president, The Rios Group; vice chair, Fort Worth Transportation Authority (The T); and vice chair, APTA Transit Board Members Committee. [More]


Meet Christian Richards!

This is the latest in an ongoing series of stories showcasing members of the APTA staff.
The subject of this profile is Christian Richards, legislative analyst, Government Affairs. [More]


Forging Regional Partnerships for Development
BY SUSAN BERLIN, Senior Editor

Public transportation is an integral part of regional development projects—so the first concern is making sure that it has a place at the table from the beginning. [More]


APTF Plans GALA 2012 at Annual Meeting

On Monday, Oct. 1, from 7-9 p.m., attendees at the APTA Annual Meeting in Seattle are invited to support the American Public Transportation Foundation (APTF)—and get to know the up-and-coming talent in the public transportation industry—at this year’s APTF Gala. The Jazz Unlimited Band, a favorite musical group in the Pacific Northwest, will perform at the event. [More]

TCRP Publications Available

The Transportation Research Board (TRB) recently released several Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) publications. [More]


KCATA Implements Gunshot Detection System in Partnership with Kansas City, MO, Police

The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority (KCATA) in Kansas City, MO, recently joined the Kansas City Police Department (KCPD) in deploying ShotSpotter, an acoustic technology that provides detailed information on gunshots fired. [More]

MARTA Launches Customer Common Courtesy Initiative

The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) has launched a new initiative to help remind customers of common courtesy rules to follow while using public transportation. Its main objective is to raise awareness about the importance of treating everyone who uses MARTA with mutual respect and dignity. [More]

United Way Honors Palm Tran

The United Way of Palm Beach County, FL, recently honored Palm Tran as Most Improved Workplace during the 2011-2012 campaign. The agency increased employee participation in the drive by 69 percent and donations by 53 percent compared with the previous year. [More]

In Cleveland, Free Trips Encourage Bicyclists to Ride Buses and Rail

Public transportation agencies understand the importance of other alternatives to the single-occupancy automobile, such as the bicycle. While bike racks are increasingly common on public transit buses, the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) is taking the next step, inviting cyclists to ride free on specific occasions. [More]

LIRR Provides Online Ticket Sales for Service to Golf Tournament

For the first time, MTA Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) made available to customers the online purchase of tickets—specifically for service to The Barclays PGA Tour Event at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale, NY, Aug. 21-26. [More]

Cincinnati Metro Transports Choir Members

Cincinnati Metro provided more than 58,000 rides to choir members and visitors during the 11-day World Choir Games hosted by the city in July. [More]

NCRTD Dedicates Transit Center in Memory of Jim West, Founding Member

The North Central Regional Transit District (NCRTD), Española, NM, recently dedicated its new headquarters in memory of Jim West, a founding member of the NCRTD Board of Directors in 2004 and its chairman from 2006 until his retirement in 2008 because of poor health. [More]

INIT Achieves ‘Zero Waste’ in Green Operation

After a year-long initiative to become a 100 percent green company, INIT (Innovations in Transportation Inc.) in Chesapeake, VA, received the Zero Waste to Landfill Certification from TFC Recycling, which collects, processes, and markets recyclable materials in Virginia and North Carolina and guided INIT during the process. [More]

AATA Approves Process to Create Countywide Public Transit Authority

The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority (AATA) in Ann Arbor, MI, has approved a four-party Public Transportation Agreement and Articles of Incorporation that will allow the agency to expand its services countywide. This action follows previous approvals from the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners and the city councils of Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti. [More]

Ben Franklin Transit Receives LEED Gold Certification

Two of Ben Franklin Transit’s (BFT) facilities in Richland, WA, have received Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council: the new administration building and the remodel of the existing administration building into a new operations building. [More]

Omnitrans Unveils New Logo, Slogans, and Fleet Graphics

Omnitrans in San Bernardino, CA, unveiled its new logo, slogan, and fleet graphics at an Aug. 15 event at its main transfer center in downtown San Bernardino. [More]


Implementing MAP-21: Public Transit Agencies and Riders Must Be at the Table
BY DERON LOVAAS, Federal Transportation Policy Director, Natural Resources Defense Council, Washington, DC

This summer’s Congressional debate signaled a different era for public transportation policy. The House of Representatives threatened to take the Mass Transit Account out of the Highway Trust Fund for the first time in its 30-year history. This would have ended dedicated support for public transit systems across the country. Thankfully, bipartisan pressure—especially in the suburbs of Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia—killed this terrible idea. However, the whole fight signaled a new era for public transit investment. [More]


Who's Doing What in the Industry

Passenger Transport announces the following hirings and promotions in public transportation agencies and business members. Items appear in People on the Move in the order in which they are received. [More]

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