BALTIMORE, MD (Thursday, August 18, 2022) – The Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC) will convene a Transit Governance and Funding Workgroup to identify ways to improve transit governance and funding in the Baltimore region.
Established by BMC’s Board of Directors at its July 15th meeting, the workgroup will be chaired by BMC board member, Delegate Tony Bridges. “Moving forward it is critical that our transit system work for residents and businesses throughout Baltimore,” said Delegate Bridges. “I’m thankful to my fellow BMC board members for their leadership and to the members of the workgroup for their commitment to the issue.”
The appointed members of the workgroup include:
- Tony Bridges, Maryland State Delegate, Baltimore City, District 41
- Dr. Celeste Chavis, Associate Professor of Transportation and Urban Infrastructure Studies, Interim Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies, Morgan State University’s Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr. School of Engineering
- Andrew Gena, Director of Strategic Research, Amalgamated Transit Union AFL-CIO/CLC
- Tasha Gresham-James, Executive Director, Dundalk Renaissance
- Ron Hartman, Senior Consultant, WSP USA
- Jon Laria, Managing Partner, Ballard Spahr
- Michael McMillan, President & Business Agent, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1300
- Tony Scott, Executive Director, Southwest Partnership
- Samuel Snead, Director, Anne Arundel County Department of Transportation
- Aaron Tomarchio, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Tradepoint Atlantic
- Adrea Turner, Chief of Staff, Urban Institute
- D’Andrea Walker, Acting Director, Baltimore County Department of Public Works & Transportation
- Mary Washington, Maryland State Senator, Baltimore City, District 43
“Public transportation plays an essential role in the advancement of people, businesses, the environment and overall economy of a city and a region,” said Baltimore Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “As our local economy emerges from the pandemic, we will need to adequately advocate for and invest in an inclusive transit system that truly connects all of our residents to educational and employment opportunities to drive economic growth for communities throughout Baltimore.”
The workgroup has two objectives. First, the workgroup will prioritize one or more governance models identified in the Baltimore Regional Transportation Board’s 2021Baltimore Regional Transit Governance and Funding Study. The 2021 study researched and identified five potential governance and funding structures for the region’s transit services, as well as a sixth option of maintaining the status quo. The workgroup will review options detailed in the 2021 study and make a formal recommendation to the BMC Board of Directors, Maryland General Assembly, and Governor.
“The assembled transit, business and thought leaders are experts in their fields,” said Baltimore County Executive John Olszewski, Jr. “I look forward to hearing the recommendations so we can work with the General Assembly and next Governor to provide meaningful and impactful transportation solutions for the Baltimore region.”
Additionally, the workgroup will review funding associated with the Locally Operated Transit Systems (LOTS) program and develop options for increased equity and transparency in the distribution of those funds.
The Baltimore Regional Transit Governance and Funding Workgroup will meet on the first Friday of every month through the end of the year. Meetings will be held at the Baltimore Metropolitan Council’s office and will be open to members of the public. The first meeting will be on September 2, 2022. Click here to view the workgroup’s opening presentation.
“This workgroup is a necessary step toward establishing a high functioning and more equitable transit system for the Baltimore region,” said Mike Kelly, executive director of the Baltimore Metropolitan Council. “BMC has taken a thoughtful and diligent approach in analyzing the region’s transit system and I’m pleased to see the issue of local input and decision-making is becoming central to the conversation.”
The Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC) works collaboratively with the chief elected officials in the region to create initiatives to improve our quality of life and economic vitality. BMC, as the Baltimore region’s council of governments, hosts the Baltimore Regional Transportation Board (BRTB), the federal metropolitan planning organization (MPO), and supports local government by coordinating efforts in a range of policy areas including emergency preparedness, housing, cooperative purchasing, environmental planning and workforce development.
BMC’s Board of Directors includes the executives of Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Harford and Howard counties, the mayor of the City of Baltimore, a member of the Carroll County and Queen Anne’s County boards of commissioners, a member of the Maryland State Senate, a member of the Maryland House of Delegates, and a gubernatorial appointee from the private sector.