Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed Appointed Chair of the Transportation and Communications Committee of the U.S. Conference of Mayors

Committee will play a pivotal role in developing sustainable transportation policies for cities and regions across the nation

Mayor Kasim Reed recently was appointed Chair of the Transportation and Communications Committee by the president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Burnsville Mayor Elizabeth B. Kautz.

The U.S. Conference of Mayors is the official nonpartisan organization of cities with populations greater than 30,000. There are 1,204 such cities in the United States today, and each city is represented in the conference by its chief elected official, the mayor.

“I am extremely honored to be appointed by Mayor Kautz as the Chair of the Transportation and Communications Committee by the U.S. Conference of Mayors,” Mayor Kasim Reed said. “I am committed to helping develop real transportation solutions in our country. To help resolve many of the nation’s transit governance issues, the Transportation and Communications Committee will work to ensure that federal transit policies meet the needs of urban communities across the country. We also will share factual information on transit plans and benefits.”

The president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors appoints standing committees and designates the chairperson for those committees. Once the president proposes the committees and its chairperson, those candidates must be approved by a majority vote of the Executive Committee. The Transportation and Communications Committee is responsible for developing and implementing sustainable transportation and communications policies for the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

"As called for in our 2010 Metro Agenda for America, Mayor Reed and the Transportation and Communications Committee will fight to fix our nation's broken transportation system,” said Conference of Mayors President Burnsville Mayor Elizabeth B. Kautz. “Our federal government must redeploy existing resources and commit new resources to reduce congestion and increase our nation's energy security. Specifically, we must increase investments in transit, and provide dedicated funding for high-speed intercity rail program equal to the investment our nation made a half-century ago building the Interstate Highway System."

Mayor Reed has been a leader on transit governance issues for most of his political career. As a member of the Georgia State Senate, Mayor Reed served on the Senate Transportation Committee and was a strong advocate for improving the state’s regional transit network. This spring, he played a key role in the passage of House Bill 277, a groundbreaking transportation funding bill.

Most recently, Mayor Kasim Reed was voted Chair of the Regional Transit Committee (RTC), a newly developed policy committee of the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC). The Regional Transit Committee focuses on issues of regional transit system planning, funding and governance. The RTC is a policy body specifically charged with governance of a multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional regional transit system.
The U.S. Conference of Mayors strives to promote the development of effective national urban/suburban policy; strengthen federal-city relationships; ensure that federal policy meets urban needs; provide mayors with leadership and management tools; and create a forum in which mayors can share ideas and information.

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