Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the appointment of Coucilmember Mike Bonin, Councilmember Paul Krekorian, and "Jackie" Dupont-Walker to the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transit Authority.
"I want to make sure we're careful and strategic with our transportation dollars. That's the only way we're going to make a real difference in the traffic congestion that costs us billions of dollars in lost productivity and billions of hours in time away from our lives," Mayor Garcetti said. "I will work to make smart investments in bus and rail to improve the ride for transit-users, speed commutes for drivers, and create new jobs along transit lines and around stations."
Mike Bonin was recently elected to Los Angeles City Council, representing L.A.'s 11th District. Previously, Bonin served as chief deputy to former Councilmember Bill Rosendahl. In that role, he was an alternate member on the Board of Directors of the Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority and a Co-Chair of the North Runway Safety Advisory Committee. He has also served as district director for U.S. Congresswoman Jane Harman and deputy chief of staff for Councilmember Ruth Galanter, and is co-founder and program director of Camp Courage, a training program for LGBT community organizers.
"I'm excited to work with Mayor Garcetti to improve and increase bus and rail service in Los Angeles to cut congestion and make commutes faster," Councilmember Bonin said. "We on the Westside are especially eager to get moving with real solutions that give us back the family time and dollars we lose while we are stuck in traffic and gridlock."
"Jackie" Dupont-Walker is the founding president of Ward Economic Development Corporation, a faith-based community development organization, and is chair of the USC Master Plan Advisory Committee where she represents the residents of the West Adams district. She is involved in numerous other civic organizations and serves as the AME Church International Social Action Officer and as the Social Action chair of Delta Sigma Theta-- Century City.
"I am looking forward to collaborating with Mayor Garcetti to create an L.A. transportation system that will help bring our city's diverse neighborhoods closer together in every way," Dupont-Walker said. "A world-class system should be accessible to every L.A. neighborhood, and new transportation hubs and corridors are opportunities to spark much-needed job creation and neighborhood revitalization by spurring local economies."
Paul Krekorian is a member of the Los Angeles City Council, representing L.A.'s 2nd District and is chair of the Council's Budget and Finance Committee. Before being elected to Council, Krekorian served in the California State Assembly representing the 43rd District and was chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Renewable Energy and Assistant Majority Leader. Previously, he served as the President of the Burbank Board of Education.
"I look forward to working with Mayor Garcetti, my MTA colleagues, and all stakeholders to tackle Southern California's most pressing transportation issues," said Councilmember Krekorian. "Through innovation and efficiency, we need to get more for our transportation dollars and accelerate MTA's work toward enhanced mobility throughout the entire region. This is a critical moment in our pursuit of a seamless public transportation system that cost-effectively reduces congestion in the San Fernando Valley and all of Los Angeles, and I'm honored that the Mayor has entrusted me with this responsibility."
Mayor Garcetti is committed to reducing traffic congestion and making commutes faster. He will focus on continued improvement, expansion, and technological innovation of MTA's bus and rail service. He will both fight for additional transportation funding and work to improve MTA operations so costs are lowered. He will seek increased regional coordination and partnership, recognizing that L.A. traffic can result from a trip originating in a nearby city and ending in another. He also recognizes that transit can catalyze overall economic development by reducing traffic (and its associated costs in lost productivity), improving quality of life, and making Los Angeles more attractive to businesses. Mayor Garcetti will seek to harness on-going capital projects at MTA and leverage the work of L.A. city departments to stimulate economic development along transit corridors and station areas across the city. Mayor Garcetti recognizes that this issue requires a multi-faceted approach, including better management of vehicular traffic and pedestrian and bicycle planning and infrastructure. In addition, transportation options are key to cleaner air and a more sustainable environment in Los Angeles.
MTA serves as transportation planner, coordinator, designer, builder, and operator for Los Angeles County. More than 9.8 million people live and work within the 1,433-square-mile service area. The budget for Fiscal Year 2013-14 is $5 billion.
The MTA is governed by a 13 member Board of Directors that includes the Mayor of Los Angeles and three mayoral appointees.