New Metro Appointee Wants Federal Transit Oversight | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

New Metro Appointee Wants Federal Transit Oversight

Play associated audio

By Rebecca Blatt

The latest Metro accident that killed two workers brings new urgency to safety concerns -- at a time of transition for the transit agency. Metro's General Manager is resigning, and Metro's Board will see a leadership change this week.

Meanwhile, the latest Metro Board appointee says the federal government should play a critical role in the agency's future.

Mortimer Downey served as a Department of Transportation Deputy Secretary in the Clinton Administration. This week the Obama Administration selected him to be one of its first federal Metro board appointees, allowed under Metro funding legislation.

Downey says it doesn't appear that Metro safety procedures are working.

"Whatever it is they've been doing so far doesn't seem to have had the desired effect," says Downey.

He says it's time for the federal government to oversee safety of public transit.

"They have the technical capability to do that, they can draw on what they've done in other modes, and they have no objective other than assuring safety," he says.

The Obama administration has a proposal to put oversight under the Department of Transportation. Downey says he's waiting to see whether the Administration funds the move in its next budget.

NPR

In This Test Kitchen, The Secret To A Great Cookbook Is Try, Try Again

Yotam Ottolenghi and his partner have a thriving food empire that includes wildly successful cookbooks. We go inside their London test kitchen as recipes are put through their paces.
NPR

Bugs: Not What's For Dinner — Until They're Tastier, Maybe

A U.K. researcher says the environmental argument for eating bugs isn't working on its own. She says chefs and policymakers must "make insect dishes appeal as food, not just a way to save the planet."
NPR

Nebraska Repeals Death Penalty, But U.S. Isn't Quite Ready To Abandon It

Cost and lethal-injection complications have led some states to reconsider the death penalty. U.S. support for the practice has declined over the last two decades, but three-in-five still support it.
NPR

Questions Remain About How To Use Data From License Plate Scanners

The scanners are standard equipment for police, but what's not settled is what happens to all the data collected. That data can link people to certain addresses and flag unusual activity.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.