Thursday, September 27, 2012
Frank Wolf (R-10th)'s legislation would give Virginia more appointees on the MWAA Board of Directors, but supervisors want a hand in the appointment process.
As U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10th) prepares a bill that would change the makeup of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Board of Directors, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors are asking him to include language that would give Northern Virginia more influence in appointing members. The MWAA Board — which has been sharply criticized by Virginia officials in Fairfax and elsewhere for its handling of the Dulles Metrorail project, including a squabble over a labor agreement for Phase 2 of the line that will run from Reston to Dulles International Airport and Loudoun County — currently includes three presidential appointees, five appointees from Virginia, three from D.C. and three from Maryland. Wolf’s proposed legislation …
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
MWAA board member will no longer battle spending ouster and will resign instead.
- Karen Goff
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell announced Wednesday that the Commonwealth and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority have reached a settlement with Dennis Martire, the former MWAA Board Member who was was fighting his removal from the group for questionable spending. “Today, the Commonwealth of Virginia, the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and former board member Dennis Martire reached agreement on the terms of a settlement that put to an end the months of unnecessary and costly litigation between the parties regarding my decision to remove Martire for cause as a board member of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority," McDonnell said in a statement. "The full MWAA board considered and approved the terms of the …
Friday, September 14, 2012
"It was a rotten formula at the start whose stench only gets worse with each passing year and the skyrocketing tolls that come with it."
Friday, September 14, 2012
With another increasingly expensive round of toll fee hikes in the offing for users of the Dulles Toll Road, according to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA), AAA Mid-Atlantic wants to reiterate clearly and loudly its opposition. We understand that someone has to pay for the $6 billion cost of the construction of the Silver Line, but the overriding question in our mind is just who that should be. At last check, local motorists, via their tolls, are being forced to shoulder nearly 60% of the costs of this project. The Commonwealth of Virginia, until pushed hard by the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood, had no cash in the pot—it sole contribution was to be the tolls paid by motorists. Now, after LaHood’s arm …
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Former board member will leave in October; MWAA also announces travel, transparency changes.
Mame Reiley, adviser to the chief executive of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) will leave her post at the beginning of October, MWAA officials announced and The Washington Post reported Wednesday. The move was one of several actions the board announced Wednesday as part of an effort to salvage an image recently marred by reports of lavish travel, and contracting practices. Reiley was a longtime member of the board before resigning last February for health reasons. She was reportedly paid $180,000 for her advisory role. Reiley, a Virginia Democrat representative to the board, was a proponent of Metro's Silver Line rail to Dulles project. Her hiring as an adviser was controversial, though. Read about that in this …
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Citizens' group says Metro does not really want to hear public input on toll increases.
RCA says that Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority's planned September public hearings "are a sham" and a marketing exercise. MWAA has scheduled three area hearings, including one on Sept. 12 at South Lakes High School, to collect citizen feedback on planned increases for the Dulles Toll Road that will help finance Metro's Silver Line, currently under construction. RCA says MWAA should call the meetings a "public show and tell." “RCA is deeply disappointed in MWAA’s cynical plan to give the appearance of soliciting public comment without any of the substance,” RCA President Colin Mills said in a statement. “Even though MWAA claims to be interested in hearing the public’s opinion, MWAA’s plan for the hearings does not lay out a clear …
Friday, August 24, 2012
Examiner: GOP was aware of an insider deal with outgoing board member before politicizing it.
As the legal wrangling continues over one Democrat's seat on the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority’s Board of Directors, the contract given to another outgoing board member recently opened a new political battle over the group that is tasked with constructing Metro’s Silver Line project. Gov. Bob McDonnell recently failed to persuade a Fairfax Circuit Court judge to seat his new appointee to the panel, while Dennis Martire disputes his removal by McDonnell. Earlier this year, after Republicans criticized MWAA for pushing a project labor agreement requirement on the second phase of the Silver Line, information surfaced that members of McDonnell’s administration were aware of PLA negotiation. This week, the Washington Examiner found…
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Board member says governor is wrong for trying to cut him from 13-member board.
It has cost the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority $75,000 to cover legal fees of a former board member who is fighting his ouster, The Washington Post reports. Dennis Martire, a Democratic appointee to the 13-member board, says his removal from the group that is charged with constructing Metrorail's Silver Line is politically motivated. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) has argued that Martire damaged his credibility with questionable expenses, including spending nearly $9,200 to travel business class to Europe. Martire, an official with the Laborers’ International Union of North America, was appointed to the board by the previous governor, Tim Kaine (D). Martire has clashed with McDonnell over several issues, including a labor-…
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
As Virginia GOP pushes for control of panel, resistance continues with court ruling against governor
As legislation proposed by U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10) works its way through Congress to rework the membership of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, Virginia leaders and the existing board remain tied up in court over the current membership. A Fairfax County Circuit Court judge ruled against Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) on Monday, leaving one seat on the MWAA board vacant as the parties resolve the dispute. McDonnell attempted to remove Dennis Martire — a Democratic appointee who has come under fire for a $9,000 plane ticket to Prague for a transportation conference that MWAA authorized — and replace him with Caren Merrick, a Republican who lost her run for delegate in the 31st District last fall. At issue is whether McDonnell had …
One reader suggests Virginia should revoke MWAA’s operating permit for the Dulles Toll Road.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
There are two things that can be done to avoid the problems ahead for commuters and residents around Route 7 between Sterling and Tysons Corner. The first solution: Virginia must retake the Dulles Toll Road (DTR). Secretary Sean Connaughton on April 14, 2012 said the state was so unhappy with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority that it would rather finish building the Silver Line itself. “We are actively evaluating whether we can take the project over. These guys [MWAA] are a disaster,” Connaughton said. “We’re at the point, quite honestly, where we think we could potentially do it better, cheaper, faster.” The Virginia Department of Transportation controls the Operating Permit for the DTR and could revoke that permit based on a…
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Group will get public feedback at upcoming meetings, but still has to pay for Silver Line Phase 2.
Metropolitan Washington Airport Authorities officials say they will hold a series of public meetings this fall to discuss increases on the Dulles Toll Road. MWAA officials said at a meeting on Wednesday that tolls are going to rise - the unknown is by how much. "I don't want to mislead anyone. Tolls have to go up," Andrew Rountree, MWAA's chief financial officer, told The Washington Post. "There's a minimum level of toll increase that really has to occur in order for the board to meet its responsibilities." Dates for the meeting have not been set. Tolls are already slated to rise 50 cents Jan. 1, 2013, and some projections say the cost of driving from the Capital Beltway to Dulles International Airport could double from the current one-way…