COG News - June 2013

Congressman Delaney Offers Local Leaders Details on Proposal to Rebuild Infrastructure

John DelaneyCiting the urgent need to rebuild the region and nation’s aging highways, water mains, and electric grids, U.S. Representative John Delaney (MD-06) discussed with area leaders at the June COG Board meeting a proposal to create a national fund for large-scale infrastructure financing. He said the $50 billion fund, the centerpiece of his recently proposed Partnership to Build America Act, would help localities finance qualified projects. The bonds would be attractive to U.S. companies by allowing them to bring back from overseas a certain amount of their earnings tax free. Delaney also noted his proposal has bipartisan backing. Video of his presentation has been posted on COG's Region Forward page. He was also interviewed by WTOP at the meeting.

COG Officials Penny Gross, Walter Tejada Elected to Leadership Posts for NARC

Penny Gross and Walter TejadaFairfax County Board of Supervisors Vice Chair Penny Gross was elected President of the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) Board of Directors at the organization's annual conference in Philadelphia. Arlington County Board Chair Walter Tejada was re-elected as NARC Board Region III Director, representing the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia. NARC serves as the national voice for regionalism by advocating for regional cooperation as the most effective way to address a variety of community planning and development opportunities and issues.

New Analyses Show Changes in Driving, Commuting in Region

David SnyderThe average amount of daily driving per person decreased between 2005 and 2011 according to a new analysis by the Transportation Planning Board in June. The analysis showed the trend of less driving per person occurred in all parts of the region, and the biggest declines occurred in the outer suburbs of Charles, Frederick, Loudoun, and Prince William counties. Staff noted several possible causes for the decline, including the recession, fuel prices, more widespread use of e-commerce and electronic communications, telecommuting, as well as shifting preferences toward less travel by car, especially among young people. Falls Church Vice Mayor and TPB Member David Snyder spoke with ABC7 about the findings. A previous TPB analysis in May highlighted changes in the share of people living and working in the same jurisdiction.

Solar Power Lighting the Way for Sustainable Energy

Solar PowerA recent blog featured efforts by the Council of Governments and its member governments to promote the adoption of solar technology throughout the region. The blog highlights programs by Arlington, Frederick, Loudoun and Prince George's counties. With over 1,600 solar systems already installed on residential, commercial, and government buildings, the region is on track to meet its goal of encouraging 5,000 new renewable energy systems to be installed by 2016. In July, COG staff will join local officials for an Energy Tour of Charles County, which will include presentations on solar and wind power.

Upcoming COG Meetings/Events

For more information on the following featured meetings/events, visit the COG Events Calendar. In addition to these events, the calendar lists all meetings of COG policy and technical committees as well as some meetings of other regional organizations.

July 10: COG Board of Directors
July 17: Transportation Planning Board
July 24: Joint Meeting - Chesapeake Bay and Water Resources Policy Committee and Climate Energy and Environment Policy Committee
July 24: Metropolitan Washington Air Quality Committee

About COG

The Council of Governments is an independent, nonprofit association where area leaders address regional issues affecting the District of Columbia, suburban Maryland and Northern Virginia. COG's membership is comprised of 300 elected officials from 22 local governments, the Maryland and Virginia state legislatures, and U.S. Congress. The Metropolitan Memo is sent to this membership as well as regional stakeholders and citizens.
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