Posts Tagged ‘Lynn Westmoreland’

Trump administration renominates candidates to transportation positions

A number of candidates to transportation-related oversight posts in the federal government whose nominations were returned to President Donald Trump in early January have been renominated to those posts.

Thelma Drake has been renominated to be the administrator of the DOT’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and Lynn Westmoreland, Joseph Gruters and Rick Dearborn are again under consideration for positions on the Amtrak board of directors.

SMART Transportation Division opposes the nomination of Westmoreland, whose voting record as a U.S. representative shows he has a long history of voting against Amtrak funding.

“As a longtime member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials, Westmoreland has a hostile voting record against Amtrak, which includes efforts to eliminate federal funding for Amtrak entirely. In addition, Westmoreland has been an original cosponsor of the ‘National Right-to-Work Act’ on multiple occasions, which would significantly weaken our ability to collectively bargain. For these reasons, we oppose his nomination as it would undermine the core mission of Amtrak and its employees,” we reported when his nomination was initially introduced in October 2017.

Also renominated by the president are Michelle Schultz to the Surface Transportation Board (STB), and Michael Graham and Jennifer Homendy to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). Homendy is currently serving a term on the board that runs out at the end of 2019.

Two nominations also were made to highway oversight positions — Heidi King to administer the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Nicole Nason to administer the Federal Highway Administration (FHA).

These nominations will be considered by U.S. Senate subcommittees before potential advancement for consideration by the full Senate.

SMART TD against Trump’s nominee for Amtrak chair

SMART TD opposes the recent nomination of former U.S. Rep. Lynn A. Westmoreland of Georgia by the Trump administration to serve on the Board of Directors of Amtrak.

Former U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia is a nominee of President Donald Trump to the Amtrak board.As a longtime member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials, Westmoreland has a hostile voting record against Amtrak, which includes efforts to eliminate federal funding for Amtrak entirely. In addition. Westmoreland has been an original cosponsor of the “National Right-to-Work Act” on multiple occasions, which would significantly weaken our ability to collectively bargain. For these reasons, we oppose his nomination as it would undermine the core mission of Amtrak and its employees.

Please see below former Representative Lynn Westmoreland’s extreme voting record on Amtrak in the 114th Congress (2015-2016):

  • RCV#110: Voted YES on McClintock Amendment to H.R. 749  — Eliminate ALL Amtrak Funding (3/4/15)
  • RCV#303: Voted YES on Brooks Amendment to H.R. 2577  — Eliminate Amtrak Operating Grants (6/4/15)
  • RCV#304: Voted YES on Brooks Amendment to H.R. 2577  — Eliminate Amtrak Capital/Debt Service Grants (6/4/15)
  • RCV#314: Voted YES on Sessions Amendment to H.R. 2577  — Prohibit Funds for Sunset Limited Line (6/9/15)                                   
  • RCV#315: Voted YES on Sessions Amendment to H.R. 2577  — Prohibit Funds for Amtrak Routes 2x Cost/Revenue (6/9/15)

Earlier this year, Trump’s budget proposal to Congress for fiscal year 2018 called for eliminating federal support for Amtrak’s long distance train services, which would result in the immediate loss of 10,000 non-Northeast Corridor Amtrak jobs and the destabilization of the Railroad Retirement trust fund.