Biden Appoints Slew of DOT Officials
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President Joe Biden has appointed Meera Joshi to serve as deputy administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Joshi’s appointment Jan. 21, the day after Biden’s inauguration. Joshi represents one of 40 people who were appointed to federal government posts that day.
Joshi previously served as commissioner of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission, which is the agency in charge of licensing and regulating the city’s medallion taxicabs, for-hire vehicles, commuter vans and paratransit vehicles.
Joshi replaces Wiley Deck, who served as deputy administrator of FMCSA during the Trump administration. Biden has yet to name an administrator for FMCSA, which is a Senate-confirmed position.
Lana Hurdle, deputy assistant secretary for budget and programs at DOT, will serve as acting secretary of transportation until former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg is confirmed by the Senate. Buttigieg appeared before the Senate Commerce Committee on Jan. 21.
According to DOT’s announcement, many of the appointees are already at work during the opening days of the Biden administration.
“This experienced team looks forward to getting right to work on behalf of the American people to deliver on policies and projects that will create jobs, equitably serve all Americans and meet the climate crisis,” said Carlos Monje Jr., senior adviser to the secretary. “President Biden has been clear: Stronger infrastructure is a key to building our country back better than it was before.”
American Trucking Associations President Chris Spear said he looks forward to establishing a professional relationship with Joshi. He said 80% of all U.S. communities depend solely on trucks for their freight deliveries.
“We are looking forward to getting to know Meera Joshi and find ways to work together to bolster safety, improve enforcement of existing laws and regulations and provide important stability for our industry,” Spear said.
Among the slew of appointees are Massachusetts Department of Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack, who has been tapped to serve as deputy administrator for the Federal Highway Administration, and outgoing Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority General Manager Nuria Fernandez, who has been named deputy administrator of the Federal Transit Administration.
Steven Cliff, who serves as deputy executive officer at the California Air Resources Board, has been appointed deputy administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Biden has proposed a $1.9 trillion economic aid package to assist with COVID-19 recovery. The package would dedicate $20 billion for transit operations, many of which have been struggling during the pandemic.
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