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Transportation Funding Options on the Agenda

The Montgomery County Council’s Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment (T and E) Committee will hold a Jan. 17 work session at 9:30 a.m. with a panel of experts who will offer a variety of innovative methods to fund transportation projects. Montgomery County has planned for several major transportation projects to support its economic growth, but funding for the projects has been difficult to secure.

The T and E Committee, which is chaired by Roger Berliner and includes Councilmembers Nancy Floreen and Hans Riemer, will meet in the Third Floor Hearing Room of the Council Office Building at 100 Maryland Ave. in Rockville. The meeting will be televised live by County Cable Montgomery (CCM—Cable Channel 6 on Comcast and RCN, Channel 30 on Verizon). The broadcast also will be streamed through the County Web site at

Among the future projects Montgomery County has long discussed is the Purple Line east-west connection of the Bethesda Metrorail station and the New Carrollton station in Prince George’s County; the Corridor Cities Transitway that would extend public transit north of the Shady Grove Metrorail station; a Rapid Transit System throughout the County; and several major highway and interchange improvements.

Berliner requested a panel be brought together to discuss means by which local governments have raised significant revenue for major transportation capital projects within their respective jurisdictions. The worksession will focus on the County’s need for several such projects to promote its economic health and quality of life. Councilmember George Leventhal requested that the committee be briefed on the funding arrangement for Northern Virginia’s Silver Line, which is under construction to Dulles International Airport.

“Even as we beseech the state to provide critical transportation funding, we know that we must also have a good understanding of how other local governments across the country are funding transportation improvements,” said Berliner. “This session is designed to do just that, including looking at what is happening across our border in Virginia, and understanding how the Silver Line is being funded and how the public/private partnership that is at the heart of the express toll lanes works.”

The panel will include:


  • Arthur Guzzetti, the vice president for policy of the American Public Transit Association (APTA). He previously had 16 years in management with New Jersey Transit and with the Port Authority of Allegheny County (Pittsburgh). His career focus has been on generating support for public transportation.
  • Deborah Lipman, manager of government affairs for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA). The MWAA is constructing the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project. She will describe the evolution of the financing for the Silver Line extension to Dulles Airport.
  • John Lynch, the regional transportation program director for the Virginia Department of Transportation’s Northern Virginia Megaprojects. He provides oversight for a transportation program in excess of $5 billion.
  • Steven Titunik, communications director for Virginia Megaprojects and the Regional Transportation Program of the Virginia Department of Transportation. He is responsible for public outreach/communications for projects including the I-495 Capital Beltway Express Lanes, the I-95 Express Lanes and the coordination of the Silver Line.

Among the topics that will be addressed are the financing, construction and operation of the recently opened I-495 HOT lanes and the extension of the I-95 HOT lanes.


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