Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Secretary Pena Promises to Bring 'New Perspective' to DOT Role (Department of Transportation Secretary Federico Pena)

Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

Secretary Pena Promises to Bring 'New Perspective' to DOT Role (Department of Transportation Secretary Federico Pena)

Article excerpt

Transportation issues are quality of life issues, Transportation Secretary Federico Pena told local elected officials at the Congressional-City Conference in Washington, D.C. last week. He outlined for conference participants the way the new administration will approach transportation issues over the next four years.

The former Denver Mayor said the Clinton administration is "bringing dramatic change to the way in which we look at transit in America." He told his former local government colleagues from around the nation, "I want to work with you, we want to understand your issues, we want to work out problems, because we are all in this together."

Chiefly, Pena sees his role as ensuring that transportation- related investments, as well as cuts, are made wisely.

"My responsibility as the new Secretary of Transportation is a very simple one," Pena said, "... to bring a new perspective to transportation that says that transportation investments are more than simply building bridges and viaducts and building highways - it's trying to bring in the concerns of the environment as we balance our transportation programs."

"It is also," he said, "investing in high technology like high-speed raid, as other nation's are doing."

Pena noted that the U.S. has fallen behind other nations in its ability and commitment to high tech transportation, but pledged his, and the President's, commitment to "move America into the next century."

That, Pena said, cannot be accomplished without the input of America's cities and towns. …

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