Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Upcoming NAPTA Membership Webinar

Can’t come to Florida for the Rail~Volution conference? Still want to participate in the NAPTA membership meeting on Saturday November 3rd at 12:15pm? We have good news for you.

As you know, we are in the midst of reviewing NAPTA’s mission, goals and services. One of our first tasks will be to gather at NAPTA membership meeting at Rail~Volution, 2007 for a discussion of the future of NAPTA.

For those unable to join in person, you can connect to the session online through a webinar. Register at https://www.gotomeeting.com/register/360947097, where you will get more information about how to access the event.

During the meeting we’ll discuss ideas for the future of NAPTA, including new services, and resources. You’ll also have an opportunity to learn about APTA’s local coalition grant program and other potential revenue resources for NAPTA members.
We hope you’ll be able to join us online --

Monday, October 29, 2007

Federal Legislative Updates from APTA

From APTA President Bill Millar:

House and Senate Appropriations Committee staff have begun pre-conference negotiations on the Fiscal Year 2008 Transportation, Treasury, and HUD Appropriations bill, but the timeline for final passage is unclear. The likely scenario is that the legislation will become part of a large Omnibus package sometime after the Thanksgiving recess.

Pre-conference negotiations have begun on energy legislation. Both the House and Senate versions of the bills include provisions that would promote public transit use as a means to reduce energy consumption and decrease the nation's dependence on imported oil.

APTA will file final comments on FTA's proposed New Starts regulation and the accompanying guidance on November 1, and continue to collect input on the five open rulemakings that remain. To find out more, click HERE.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Recent Actions in Congress and Federal Agencies

News from APTA (the American Public Transportation Association) regarding recent actions in Congress and Federal Agencies

HOUSE PASSES RAIL SAFETY IMPROVEMENT ACT On Wednesday October 17, the House of Representatives passed the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007 by a vote of 377-38. The bill makes a number of changes that apply to commuter railroads, including changes in the current hours of service laws, a mandate for positive train controls, and other modifications. During floor debate, the House adopted an amendment by the bill's sponsor, House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman James Oberstar (D-MN) which expands inspection requirements for freight and commuter rail bridges. The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation reported its version of rail safety legislation last month, but the full Senate still needs to act on that bill.

RULEMAKINGS OPEN FOR COMMENTS Seven rulemakings, covering a wide swath of FTA programs including New Starts/Small Starts, Procurement, and Grant Management, remain open for comments. APTA is working with FTA to stagger due dates for the four drafts released on September 28, since together they amount to over 400 pages of draft circulars to review. You can find the proposals, draft comments, filing information and more by clicking HERE.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Welcome to NAPTA!

After some terrific success supporting additional transit funding in the last Transportation Reauthorization legislation, the National Alliance of Public Transportation Advocates has taken a lower profile in recent years – until now!

We are pleased to let you know that NAPTA will be resuming a more proactive role in the Public Transportation advocacy arena starting with several important events at Rail~Volution, 2007, including a NAPTA luncheon on Saturday November 3rd and NAPTA activities at the tradeshow reception on Thursday, November 1st.

As we prepare for these events, we need your help to ensure that we’re headed in the right direction with NAPTA and its services. Please take a few minutes to respond to our online survey by clicking here. If you want to have a say in how NAPTA tools and strategies are developed, here’s your chance! This is your opportunity to daydream about what services would make your life as a transit advocate easier.

We look forward to your ideas as well as your participation in our NAPTA events.