CHICAGO – Gov. Pat Quinn issued an executive order Aug. 15 creating the Northeastern Illinois Public Transit Task Force, an independent panel of transit, finance and government leaders who will issue recommendations to reform the mass transit system in northeastern Illinois. SMART Transportation Division State Legislative Director Robert Guy is a member of the panel.
Guy graduated from Western Illinois University in 1991 with a bachelor of arts degree in broadcast journalism. In 1996, he was elected UTU Local 234’s local legislative representative and was re-elected in 1999 and 2003, becoming state legislative director in 2009. He has focused on expanding Amtrak service and working on safety legislation and other issues.
“Safety and efficiency are important issues in transit operations. Illinois State Legislative Director Bob Guy understands the necessary components of providing these vital services with on-time performance. This appointment is an honor for Bob and an opportunity for our transit riders in Chicagoland,” said SMART Transportation Division President Mike Futhey.
The 15-member, blue-ribbon task force is charged with developing ways to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse and streamline operations to ensure improved transit service for the millions of users each year.
The task force will issue recommendations to be considered by the General Assembly and Gov. Quinn for both the veto and spring sessions.
The executive order is part of Gov. Quinn’s agenda to strengthen oversight of mass transit in northeastern Illinois and restore commuters’ confidence. The governor’s move comes in the wake of recurring scandals at Metra and ongoing accountability problems over the last decade.
“It’s clear that the mass transit system in northeastern Illinois is not working for taxpayers,” Quinn said. “This task force is a step forward to make our transit system worthy of the public’s trust. Their recommendations will be valuable as we work in both the veto and spring sessions to reform mass transit in northeastern Illinois.”
The task force will develop recommendations to revamp the oversight of mass transit in northeastern Illinois. The task force will work to provide initial recommendations to the governor and the Illinois General Assembly prior to the fall veto session, and they will issue a final report by Jan. 31, 2014.
Other members of the Northeastern Illinois Public Transit Task Force include:
Co-chair George Ranney Jr., president and CEO of Metropolis Strategies; Co-chair Ann L. Schneider, secretary of the Illinois Department of Transportation; Carole L. Brown, currently a managing director at Barclay’s Capital; Patrick Fitzgerald, former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Adrienne M. Holloway, assistant professor of political science at DePaul University’s School of Public Service; Sylvia Jenkins, president of Moraine Valley Community College; Nick Palmer, chief of staff for Will County Executive Larry Walsh; Tony Paulauski, executive director of The Arc of Illinois; Raul Raymundo, executive director of the Resurrection Project, an organization dedicated to creating healthy communities through organizing, education and community development; Robert G. Reiter Jr., secretary-treasurer of the Chicago Federation of Labor (CFL); Ashish Sen, a member of the Chicago Transit Authority board of directors; Don Tantillo, retired high school teacher and debate coach who worked at Wheeling High School; Kathryn Tholin, CEO of Center for Neighborhood Technology; and Sonia Walwyn, vice president of Duff & Phelps, LLC.