Monday, November 27, 2006

RAMP Co-Chairs Meet US Transportation Leaders

Submitted by Paul Ellis

RAMP co-chairs David Graybill and Tim Farrell were part of a contingent of about forty regional decision-makers who met for lunch today in Everett with U.S. Senator Patty Murray and U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters.

Participants talked briefly with the two top national transportation leaders, highlighting regional progress on transportation issues and the importance of transportation improvements for maintaining economic growth, as well as appreciation for federal funding for key projects in the burgeoning Puget Sound region.

Murray is the senior U.S. Senator from Washington State; the Senate Democratic Caucus of the 110th Congress recently elected Murray as Conference Secretary. Widely recognized as a leader on transportation issues in the Senate, Murray is the ranking member of the committee that funds the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Prior to joining President George W. BushÂ’s Cabinet, Peters worked in Phoenix, AZ, as the national director for transportation policy and consulting at HDR, Inc., a major engineering firm. As leader for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) from 2001 to 2005, she placed special emphasis on finding new ways to invest in road and bridge construction, including innovative public-private partnerships that help build roads faster and at less expense. She also was a strong advocate for using new technology to reduce construction time, saving taxpayer money and resulting in safer, longer-lasting roads and highways.

Paul Ellis is lead staff for RAMP; an employee of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber, Ellis led the Pierce County Transportation Advisory Committee (PCTAC), the communityÂ’s largest transportation planning effort.

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