Governor Larry Hogan, Governor Terry McAuliffe, and Mayor Muriel Bowser Announce WMATA Safety Commission Agreement
ANNAPOLIS, MD – Governor Larry Hogan, Governor Terry McAuliffe, and Mayor Muriel Bowser announced an important step forward in the establishment of a new Metro Safety Commission, an independent oversight agency that will ultimately direct the safety and security of mass transit systems in the Washington Metropolitan Area, including the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA).
Governor Hogan, Governor McAuliffe, and Mayor Bowser signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that will move Maryland, Virginia, and Washington D.C. closer to establishing the new Metro Safety Commission. WMATA is the only public transit agency in the nation that is comprised of three separate, co-equal jurisdictions which have worked together to oversee safety of mass transit in the region through the Tri-State Oversight Committee.
“The safety and security of public transportation is an area where Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. can act as one,” said Governor Hogan. “Metro gets millions of people in the region to and from work each day and the Metro Safety Commission is an important first step to ensure that riders have access to a world-class public transportation system.”
“The Metro system is an enormous economic asset for the entire region and ensuring that it is as safe as possible must be priority one,” said Governor McAuliffe. “I look forward to continuing our work with Maryland and Washington, D.C. to execute this MOU and establish the Metro Safety Commission as soon as possible.”
“The District is committed to working with our partner jurisdictions and the new Metro leadership to ensure that the region has the safest, most reliable public transportation system in the nation,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser. “While we move forward with a new Metro Safety Commission, we will continue to push for needed reforms to improve Metro.”
This MOU is an agreement by all three parties to commit resources and staff, share information, and work together in a transparent fashion to develop strategies that will help to establish a fully compliant oversight agency. Additionally, each jurisdiction has agreed to submit necessary budget appropriations of agreed upon amounts in future budgets to fund the Commission.
This MOU brings Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C a step closer in fulfilling a federal mandate as established by the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act of 2012 (MAP-21), which gave the U.S. Department of Transportation enhanced oversight over states and jurisdictions with rail fixed guideway public transportation systems and required eligible states to have a safety oversight program.