An analysis from Governing Magazine’s “Fed Watch” section discusses the local government background of Anthony Foxx’s nomination to serve as the US Department of Transportation Secretary. Noteworthy in the analysis is the sense that a former local official, familiar with planning across multiple modes and reachign local communities, may bring those views to the federal post.
Mary Peters, who served as transportation secretary under President George W. Bush, said Foxx will rely heavily on administrators from the FAA and Federal Highway Administration, as well as Deputy Secretary of Transportation John Porcari, to get up to speed in the areas where he’s not an expert.
Leslie Wollack, infrastructure program director at the National League of Cities added that mayors tend to be adept at bringing a wide swath of stakeholders together. That skill set, she said, should serve Foxx well as he leads a transportation system that has many different components.
Peters agreed that Foxx’s background as a mayor could be a big asset in the office. “He knows what it feels like to be on the receiving end of things,” she said. By having experience as a transportation stakeholder and grantee, Foxx could have a useful perspective when it comes to knowing what Washington can do to make state and local governments work more efficently with federal transportation resources.