February 3, 2017
Chao Sworn In as DOT Secretary

Elaine Chao was sworn in as DOT secretary by Vice President Mike Pence, right, on Jan. 31 after the Senate approved her nomination earlier in the day. Also in attendance were Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Chao’s husband, left, and her father, James S.C. Chao. In a statement, APTA Chair Doran J. Barnes and APTA Acting President & CEO Richard A. White said, “The public transportation industry is ready to work with Secretary Chao on an array of public transportation issues in order to advance public transportation nationwide. We look forward to working with Secretary Chao on President Trump’s infrastructure initiative to ensure that working people have access to jobs and communities maintain their economic competitiveness." Chao previously served as DOT deputy secretary in the George H.W. Bush administration and Department of Labor secretary in the George W. Bush administration, making her the first Asian-American woman to serve in a Cabinet-level position. For additional details about Chao’s background, click here. (Photo courtesy of USDOT)

» Connecticut DOT seeks a transit administrator in the Office of Transit & Ridesharing in the Bureau of Public Transportation. [More]
» The Greater Dayton Regional Transit Authority is looking for a deputy chief operations officer. [More]
» Clemson Area Transit is preparing a solicitation for its battery electric bus project. [More]
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Letter to Trump Stresses Surface Infrastructure Investment, HTF

APTA, many public transit agency members and related groups are among the signatories of a letter to President Trump emphasizing the importance of surface transportation in his plans to rebuild U.S. infrastructure.

“Any responsible proposal must provide improvements to all types of infrastructure throughout the country,” the letter states, adding that the federal government must restore solvency to the Highway Trust Fund. “This will require a commitment to a long-term, reliable, dedicated, user-based revenue source for the Highway Trust Fund and the effective surface transportation programs it supports.”

See the letter here.

New York MTA Names Hakim Interim Executive Director

Veronique (Ronnie) Hakim, president of MTA New York City Transit since 2015, has been named interim executive director of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) by New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo following the Jan. 31 retirement of Tom Prendergast, who served the agency for 25 years, including as chairman and CEO.

MTA Vice Chairman Fernando Ferrer will serve as interim MTA board chairman during the nationwide search process by a seven-member committee for a chair and CEO. Committee members include Prendergast, Ferrer, former MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph Lhota and former DOT Secretary Rodney Slater.

Hakim has more than 24 years of experience at MTA in addition to serving as executive director of New Jersey Transit Corporation.

Darryl C. Irick, NYC Transit senior vice president, Department of Buses, and president of MTA Bus Company, will serve as acting president of NYC Transit while Hakim serves as interim MTA executive director. He joined the MTA in 1986 as a bus operator and was named to his most recent post in 2011

Find details here.


Come to Washington March 12-14 for APTA’s 2017 Legislative Conference to learn about the new administration’s plans for infrastructure and other legislative and policy issues important to public transit professionals. Speakers are expected to include administration officials, members of Congress, staffers and Washington opinion makers. Register now!


What’s in a Name? Plenty, say Nebraska public transit fans who applauded a new name change from the Department of Roads to the Department of Transportation.

Cuts and Funding: Ohio public transit agencies are reviewing Gov. John Kasich’s new budget, which proposes both funding and cuts but “shows an effort to address needs,” say officials.

Long and Winding Road: Reducing commute times is one way to attract more “choice riders,” said Steven Polzin, Center for Urban Transportation Research, in this Governing magazine article.

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