The Washington Post

Metro joins District jobs program

Metro is joining the One City One Hire program. (Lawrence Jackson/Associated Press)

Testing began Wednesday of 26 District residents applying to be bus drivers with the transit agency. Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) highlighted Metro’s participation by holding his bi-weekly news conference at DOES headquarters, where testing was taking place.

But as Gray praised One City One Hire, which has placed 330 residents in jobs and now has 170 participating companies, he had to explain recent layoffs in the District government.

The Department of Public Works eliminated 30 positions from booting vehicles and in the impoundment lot and another 30 street sweeping positions. William O. Howland, DPW director, said the agency found 21 of those employees other positions within DPW.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS administration lost federal grant funds and will likely have to lay off employees, said Mohammad N. Akhter, director of health. He said the agency is currently trying to figure out how to minimize layoffs to fewer than five people.

Gray said the government’s challenging budget makes One City One Hire even more important. “We are increasingly looking to the private sector to employ people,” he said.

The city also needs to turn to independent agencies on which the District has appointees. In the case of Metro, Tom Downs, one of the city’s representatives on the Metro board, suggested the partnership, Gray said.

District residents make up about 4 to 5 percent of Metro’s 11,000-employee workforce, according to Jack Requa, who oversees bus operations.

The small representation of D.C. residents can be attributed to a lack of applicants and the lack of training for the jobs, Requa said.

Gray said he was “confident this is just the beginning.”


Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read


Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
How to make Sean Brock's 'Heritage' cornbread
New limbs for Pakistani soldiers
The signature dish of Charleston, S.C.
Play Videos
Why seasonal allergies make you miserable
John Lewis, 'Marv the Barb' and the politics of barber shops
What you need to know about filming the police
Play Videos
The Post taste tests Pizza Hut's new hot dog pizza
5 tips for using your thermostat
Michael Bolton's cinematic serenade to Detroit
Play Videos
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
Pandas, from birth to milk to mom
The signature drink of New Orleans