The Washington Post

Metro board to get more new members

[This post has been updated]

Metro’s board of directors is undergoing more changes as new D.C. members are expected to join the panel and Virginia’s governor is expected to name a new member.

On Tuesday, Kwame R. Brown, chairman of the D.C. Council, said in an interview that council member Muriel Bowser of Ward 4 will replace council member Tommy Wells of Ward 6 as the District’s voting member on the transit authority’s board. Wells was named to the Metro board in January.

Thomas J. Bulger, a lobbyist in the city, is expected to serve as an alternate to the Metro board from the District, taking the seat of council member Michael S. Brown on the board.

The D.C. changes come as Metro awaits word from Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell on his plans to appoint a state voting member to the board. One of Virginia’s four representatives is expected to have to step down or move from a voting seat to a non-voting, alternate seat. The Virginia legislature gave the governor the authority to name a member in its most recent session. The Northern Virginia Transportation Commission, which is comprised of 19 local and state elected officials plus the state’s public transportation director, must relinquish one of its seats.

Members of the governor’s staff have said a short list of possible candidates has been given to McDonnell, but there is no definite time frame for when he will make an announcement.

Plus, Metro board member Michael Barnes — a principal, voting member from Maryland — said that he wants to step down.

The shifts come as the 16-seat board is trying to revamp how it governs. Fourteen of the seats are currently filled — nine with relatively new members.

The board has been criticized by regional and federal groups for paying too much attention to parochial issues while not maintaining adequate oversight of the transit authority.

Staff writers Mike DeBonis and Tim Craig contributed to this report. Follow me on twitter @postmetrogirl.

Dana Hedgpeth is a Post reporter, working the early morning, reporting on traffic, crime and other local issues.



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