|STAY INFORMED & KEEP NEW YORK MOVING!|
Counting down to TRANSIT AWARENESS DAY 2015…
Transit Awareness Day is three weeks from today and it is important we make a strong showing! We need you to join us February 3 at the Capital in Albany to bring lawmakers a clear message on the importance of investing in transit infrastructure. A show of strength and a unified voice are critical.
Join your colleagues from across the state in helping make legislators see the vital connection between infrastructure investment and economic development and job growth.
Our industry partners play a key role, too. Become a Transit Awareness Day sponsor and secure a prominent position on Transit Awareness Day 2015!
Be in Albany on February 3. Bring a colleague. More details and Registration here.
In an interview with Ithaca.com, New York State Assembly Member Barbara Lifton discussed a range of issues, including the Medicaid redesign that has had a devastating effect on rural transit systems. Lifton says that at a recent meeting “…DOT was saying, we realize we have to get out of our silos and look at this more holistically. We ought to be increasing funding for rural transit. I'm all in favor of people having the choice to take taxis, but we shouldn't be funneling them into taxis. We'll be looking at this very closely in the budget.”
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced a number of appointments to his administration, including an acting Executive Director of the Thruway Authority. Bob Megna will take the top post at the Thruway, pending Senate confirmation. Megna has served as state Budget Director since 2009. Beth DeFalco will join the administration as Deputy Director of Communications for Transportation. DeFalco most recently served as Communications Director for U.S. Senator Cory Booker.
The Republican senator in charge of infrastructure policy says his committee might look at raising the federal tax on gasoline to pay for roads. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) defended the gas tax and said that it is one of the methods on the table as the Environment and Public Works Committee figures out how to better fund infrastructure projects. Inhofe referred to Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), who said that Republicans should leave the door open for a gas tax increase.
A conservative group is criticizing Republican leaders in the Senate for suggesting they might be open to an increase in the 18.4 cents-per-gallon federal gas tax. The Alexandria, Va.-based Citizens for the Republic group said Tuesday that increasing the amount that drivers are charged at the pump for their gas prices would be a bad idea. The gas tax, which predates the development of the Interstate Highway System by nearly two decades, has been the primary source for federal transportation projects since its creation in the 1930s.
WASHINGTON, DC -- Change is in the air on Capitol Hill as Republicans take control of both houses of Congress for the first time since 2006, resulting in a host of changes to the key players on transportation issues. The following is a list of new players to watch as lawmakers get the ball rolling on the 114th Congress, which is expected to include debates about aviation and rail funding, and the stop-gap Highway Trust Fund bill passed last summer and expiring in May.
HARTFORD, CT -- In his State of the State Address, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy proposed a special "lock box'' to set aside money for transportation purposes only in order to improve the state's infrastructure. Through the years, the state's Special Transportation Fund has been raided by the legislature and governors, and the money has been used for other general purposes. The lock box would prevent that longtime practice. "No gimmicks. No diversions,'' he said. "And we should include a covenant with bond holders and all people of Connecticut to ensure that money set aside for transportation projects is only used for that purpose.
SAN JOSE, CA — Drivers are not the only ones excited about cheaper gas prices; transit agencies are also saving money on diesel fuel. But public transit ridership remains high despite the low fuel costs. “Yes, we definitely save money when gas is cheaper,” Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority spokeswoman Brandi Childress told KCBS. At the same time, Childress said that ridership levels remain high despite cheaper fuel costs due to heavy traffic congestion—that is something many commuters would rather not have to deal with.
TRAINING AND EVENTS
Congratulations to Studio 136, the creative division of the Association Development Group, Inc. for winning an American Graphic Design Award from Graphic Design USA magazine, for the New York Public Transit Association’s “Ensuring the Future” brochure!