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Ties to MWAA Woes Cut Both Ways

Examiner: GOP was aware of an insider deal with outgoing board member before politicizing it.

As the legal wrangling continues over one Democrat's seat on the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority’s Board of Directors, the contract given to another outgoing board member recently opened a new political battle over the group that is tasked with constructing Metro’s Silver Line project.

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Earlier this year, after Republicans criticized MWAA for pushing a project labor agreement requirement on the second phase of the Silver Line, information surfaced that members of McDonnell’s administration were aware of PLA negotiation.

This week, the Washington Examiner found that GOP officials also were aware that MWAA was planning to give a contract to outgoing member Mame Reiley, the issue with an event at the Loudoun County Courthouse.

Reiley was not the only former board member to receive a contract with MWAA, according to stories in the Examiner and the Washington Post.

David A. LaRock August 31, 2012 at 12:51 AM
Speaking of the Dulles Corridor, MWAA has no authority to expand the Dulles Corridor to include the rail extension past the Dulles Airport, off federal land and west to who-knows-where. But they do it because it suits the whims of elected officials who want to bring Loudoun into the herd of cash cows. Leesburg then Winchester next?
Mark Carolla September 08, 2012 at 05:37 PM
The former Mayor of Herndon and current MWAA Board Member is not named Mike Reilley, he is Michael O’Reilly, a Herndon attorney.
Mark Carolla September 08, 2012 at 07:01 PM
Kevin - Referring to "core missions" I can't understand why the Silver Line & the Toll Road, rather than merely the Access Rd. are run by MWAA, an airport authority. As to the Canadian Pacific Railway, the portion about 200 miles west of Winnepeg to the Pacific was built in about 3 years. I've groused in the Patch about why does it take us years to build 12 miles of Silver Line when the Nickel Plate Route was built from Chicago to Buffalo, or at least from Cleveland to Buffalo in a year? I'm told back then no NIMBYs or developers. Comparing projects of the heroic magnitude of the CP to projects such as the Silver Line goes well beyond engineering. (You know that. ) Her Majesty Queen Victoria's Government gave their full support in the 1880's to the CP as a means of uniting the country. Construction was condition of British Columbia becoming part of the Dominion of Canada in 1871 and rail was THE only real means of transportation. We had a similar situation in the US with the Union Pacific being chartered by Lincoln in 1863 (there was a reason it was called the UNION Pacific) Railroads were granted land & rights away & there was no bickering from tax payers that they preferred stage coaches over trains or dealing with Tysons Corner real estate interests. We haven't forgotten how to do large projects, we just don't want to pay for them, &, polemics aside we currently have one party that is ideologically opposed to supporting high speed rail or passenger rail of any sort.
Mark Carolla September 08, 2012 at 07:25 PM
Kevin - Let's be realistic, bus service has to be frequent and cover lots of neighborhoods. The routes that you talk about are scattered and I doubt there are too many commuters going from Winchester to Purcellville, This isn't Switzerland where the Post Bus does a great job of linking small villages with the Federal Rail System and everything is located within 100 yards of the bus stop. To get to the bus stop in Ashburn and from the bus stop to your destination in Leesburg you still need an automobile. I have a doctor in Ashburn and live in Herndon. Imagine the logistics of trying to take a bus for a mid-day appointment for a retiree or a soccer Mom with two kids in tow. Congressman Wolf has not been "negligent" at all on mass transit - note the world "mass" - the main commuter routes that need attention. I follow his transportation initiatives closely and my only gripe is that he inadequately in my view (I'm prejudiced because of my Army rail experience despite my aviation consulting) supports Amtrak. I think it irresponsible and unfounded to use the word "negligent" towards Congressman Wolf just because we don't have a robust bus network throughout Frederick, Clarke, and Loudoun Counties.
Bob Bruhns September 09, 2012 at 01:28 PM
Excuse me if I'm a bit politically incorrect here, but weren't BOTH political parties happy to cover up this case of big-shot favoritism? How many of the taxpayers and toll payers, who have to pay the nearly double price of this rail project that was so carelessly overseen by this clown circus of a Board and executives, would get this kind of health care compensation? I've read about trips to China, trips to Sardinia, and all sorts of lavishness. But did ANY of the Board or executives of MWAA go to Fairfield Connecticut, to see how a Metro station comparable to our Rt 28 station was built at a cost less than HALF of the price that we are being handed? Were they even AWARE of that? Were they aware that parking garages should cost HALF of the price they are handing us? Did they ask if the cost of the Silver Line should really have been as high as it is? Or did they just conveniently accept the estimates they were handed, and carefully ask no questions? Did they ask if the rail line to the Dulles Airport really should have been a three mile loop of underground tunnel when they approved that plan? Did they ask if the above ground alternate design really should have been a three mile loop of elevated track with an elevated station? Did anybody ask about a dead-end spur design? Will they now have their estimators come forth and address this issue? Or will they continue to play every possible game to distract the public from what they are really doing?

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