Posts Tagged ‘FRA administrator’

Bose Confirmed as FRA Administrator

January 13, 2022

The Senate on Wednesday confirmed Amit Bose as administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration.

Bose was nominated to the post last April and is the 15th person to serve as administrator.

He had been serving as deputy administrator and succeeded Ronald Batory, who stepped down as administrator in early 2021.

Before coming to the FRA Bose worked at architectural and engineering firm HNTB, and served the FRA’s during the Obama administration as director of governmental affairs, senior advisor, chief counsel, and deputy administrator.

He also once worked for New Jersey Transit, the New Jersey Department of Transportation, and as a congressional staff member.

Bose Nominated as FRA Administrator

April 24, 2021

Amit Bose will be nominated to be the administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration.

Bose is currently deputy Federal Railroad Administrator and has had a two-decade career in public agency positions related to transportation.

He also once served the FRA as chief counsel and a senior adviser, helping to oversee the implementation of positive train control systems.

Bose also worked for the U.S. Department of Transportation as associate general counsel and deputy assistant secretary for governmental affairs.

Before that he worked for New Jersey Transit, the New Jersey Department of Transportation and as a congressional staff member.

He earned a AB from Columbia College, an MIA from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs, and a JD from the University of Georgia.

The Biden administration also plans to nominate Carlos Monje Jr. as under secretary of transportation for policy.

Sturges Named Deputy FRA Administrator

April 20, 2018

Mathew Sturges has been appointed deputy administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration.

He previously served as majority staff director of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure where he directed legislative oversight and authorization efforts related to all modes of transportation.

Sturges also served as deputy director of government affairs for the Republican National Committee, as well as director of coalitions for the House Republican Conference.

His duties at the FRA will include serving as a member of the agency’s senior executive management team and working on safety regulatory activities, federal investments in freight and passenger rail, and legislative initiatives to advance the Trump administration’s priorities.

He replaces Heath Hall, who resigned last February.

Batory Takes over as FRA Head

March 1, 2018

Ronald L. Batory was sworn in on Wednesday as the administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration.

The ceremony was officiated by Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao. Batory is the first FRA head to have railroad operating experience since Joe Szabo, who stepped down in 2014.

During remarks at the ceremony, Batory said that safety will be the FRA’s primary focus.

Senate Confirms Batory as FRA Chief

February 14, 2018

The U.S. Senate voted Tuesday night to confirm Ronald Batory as the permanent administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration.

Ronald Batory

Batory was approved on a voice vote after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer removed a hold on a Batory confirmation vote.

The action came in the wake of concerns about railroad safety following three Amtrak accidents that resulted in six fatalities.

Batory retired in March 2017 as president and chief operating officer of Conrail.

During his 46-year railroad industry career, he served as president of the Belt Railway of Chicago and held senior positions at Class I and regional railroads, including general manager in Chicago for Southern Pacific.

Schumer had placed the hold on Batory’s confirmation vote as part of a ploy to seek to force the Department of Transportation to release federal funds for the Gateway rail tunnels project under the Hudson River.

Another factor in lifting the hold was the recent resignation of acting FRA Administrator Heath Hall for moonlighting on a second job.

The Senate also confirmed by voice vote Raymond Martinez as administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and Adam Sullivan as the Department of Transportation’s assistant secretary of government affairs.

Acting FRA Head Resigns Post

February 13, 2018

The acting administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration has resigned following allegations that he was moonlighting as a public relations consultant.

Heath Hall stepped down on Sunday from his position, which did not require Senate confirmation.

Hall was appointed acting FRA head after the Trump admistration’s pick for the permanent FRA chief post was held up in the Senate.

Trump has nominated  former Conrail executive Ron Batory, but Senator Chuck Schumer of New York and Corey Booker of New Jersey have placed a hold on the nomination in an effort to use it to pressure the administration into releasing federal funding for the proposed Gateway rail tunnel project between New York and New Jersey.

Hall had been reported to have taken a leave of absence from the FRA, citing unidentified family issues, but reports have surfaced saying that twice Hall appeared in Mississippi as a spokesman for the Madison County sheriff.

Hall had said on a federal ethics form that his public relations work would remain dormant while he worked at DOT.

However, information has surfaced that Hall received compensation for public relations efforts between July and December last year.

“We were unaware of the information that is being reported but those allegations, if they are true, are troubling,” DOT spokeswoman Marianne McInerney said in a statement. “Heath Hall has resigned his position at the Department effective immediately.”

Railway Age reported that Batory has been working as an aide to Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and is to offer his advice when when the FRA’s new interim acting administrator, General Counsel Juan D. Reyes III, testifies on positive train control implementation on Feb. 15 before the House Rail Subcommittee.

The magazine said that Trump could name Batory as deputy administrator, a post that does not need Senate confirmation but carries less prestige and offers less money

However, Batory would be able to oversee the FRA while awaiting Senate confirmation.

The Senate could also invoke cloture, which would override the hold that Schumer and Booker have on the nomination.

However, that usually requires 60 votes and Republicans cannot muster that within their own membership ranks. Under certain circumstances, cloture can be invoked with 51 votes.

A third option would be for Trump to name Batory as FRA head as a recess appointment in late February when Congress is away on break. That would make Batory head of the FRA through the end of 2019.