JBT was appointed to the RTA board yesterday. I like this quote.
â€œIt is a step up,â€ maintained Topinka after Cook County suburban commissioners voted her into a spot on the Regional Transportation Authority. â€œTransportation is no step down. It is what drives this economy.â€
More from the Tribune:
“I sat on the Senate Transportation Committee for many years,” Topinka said in a brief interview. “I think it’s a very interesting appointment.”
Topinka has had a long friendship with former Rep. Bill Lipinski (D-Ill.), who headed the House Transportation Committee and who ensured funding for several area mass-transportation projects, including the CTA’s Orange Line to Midway Airport. Lipinski now serves as a transportation lobbyist.
Topinka said it was too early to say how her appointment would affect efforts to make the RTA more Chicago-focused in relation to suburban transportation needs.
“I’m just really new at this and I’m going to look at this all over,” she said.
As a former legislator, Ms. Topinka â€œhas knowledge of state government that will be helpfulâ€ as lawmakers consider plans to boost RTA funding, said County Commissioner Tony Peraica, one of those who voted to select her for the post. â€œI wanted someone who would be more actively engaged. I think Judy will be,â€ Mr. Peraica said.
Meanwhile, Gary Skoien and David Harris are vying for a seat on the Metra board.