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Transportation Moves America Forward

Transportation Moves America Forward

Yesterday, I had the distinct honor of hosting Vice President Joe Biden at our DOT headquarters for my ceremonial swearing-in as Secretary of the Department of Transportation. I can't thank him enough for officiating and for his generous remarks.

Photo of Vice President Biden swearing-in Secretary Anthony Foxx with his wife Samara and two children, Hillary and Zachary, standing alongside

I also want to thank my pastor, the Reverend Dr. Clifford A. Jones, Sr., for making the trip from Charlotte, NC, to Washington, DC, to deliver yesterday's invocation. And I want to thank the many friends, family, and colleagues who joined me, my wife Samara, and my kids Hillary and Zachary for this celebration.

One special person who made the trip up from Charlotte is my 96-year-old grandmother, Mary Kelly Foxx. Now, she grew up in the little town of Carthage, NC, in the early years of the 20th century, one of Peter and Ida Kelly's 13 children. Pete, my great-grandfather, had something to help him support that family--he had a truck. And he used it not only to raise those 13 kids, but put every single one of them through college.

So, when I talk about transportation as a lifeline, I'm speaking from personal experience in addition to the difference I saw it make as Mayor of Charlotte.

I'm talking about the millions of Americans in the past who used our transportation system to connect with the economic promise our nation offered them. I'm talking about the millions of Americans who use our transportation system today to connect with jobs, education, medical services, and all of the resources that help make our lives so abundant. And I am talking about the millions of Americans in the next generation who will use our transportation system to connect with tomorrow's opportunities.

Because throughout our history, improved transportation has been one of the best examples of what one generation can leave to the next.

Photo of Secretary Foxx at the podium during his swearing-in

A strong transportation system ensures that a working mom spends less time in traffic and more time with her kids. A strong transportation system helps American businesses ship their products across the country and around the world. A strong transportation system helps seniors get to medical appointments and connects veterans with job training.

And that is why it is so important that we at the Department of Transportation work harder than ever before to give the American people what they demand when it comes to infrastructure:

  • Americans want their time back—not hours of traffic.
  • Americans want transportation that expands—not hinders—business capacity.
  • Americans want 21st century jobs—jobs that they will only find through 21st century infrastructure.
  • Americans want safety—and sustainability.

The work we do at DOT matters. It matters to those who do it; it matters to the American people we serve.

We will continue to do it well.

Anthony Foxx is the 17th U.S. Secretary of Transportation

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Dear Secretary Foxx; Congratulations on your appointment; there is so very much good work to do to move the U.S. and its people forward in the 21st century. Please consider encouraging innovative urban and metro area cycling programs; Copenhagen's current bike infrastructure and the plans that London's mayor has conceived offer two good examples. And of course there are bicycle programs already up and running in places like NY. In the interest of real competition--actual open markets--and innovation, too, please consider working to lift the now totally outdated 1963 "chicken tax," the only effective provision of which imposes a 25 per cent import tax, as you know, on any vehicles classed as small trucks. Thus, the U.S. does not get the Ford Ranger, which has an estimated mpg of over 30, and is sold worldwide in 180 countries--but not here at home. That's a corporate decision by Ford; but here is another example: the highly adaptable Volkswagen T5 transport van also gets an mpg north of 30--but is subject to the chicken tax, classed as a truck, so is not imported to the U.S. Ford gets around the tax, by the way, by gutting their Transit Connects as soon as they hit the U.S. shore, and having them reclassified as passenger vehicles: but of course they are intended as commercial ones. Should I say something about our deteriorating infrastructure of roads and bridges, and the jobs, jobs, jobs that could be created in shoring up all that is cracking beneath us? Indeed, sir, a great deal to do--and really, just a couple of years to do it with the worst Do-Nothing Congress in history. Ask for our help; we'll pitch in. All best, Thomas Goodmann University of Miami Miami, FL

I am so very proud of you. As the Chairperson of Long Beach Transit in Long Beach California, I could not agree with you more on the needs of the American people regarding reliable transportation. I was disappointed that you could not attend the APTA Conference in Chicago but understood your need to be present in DC. I wish you the best and know that we here in Long Beach, under our new CEO Kenneth McDonald look forward to supporting what I know will be great transportation advances.

I could not agree more. Please take a long hard look at the sad state of affairs at Greyhound. It is needed by many, especially those in small towns. I waited 3 1/2 hours for a bus in Sandusky, OH, and when it got there, it had room for one person. Ten of us were waiting, and nine of us were disenfranchised. I had options -- another night in a motel, driving a rental car back to Chicago. But the others were left with nowhere to go. And I would like my money back -- $50. The same day, a Greyhound left Canada for Chicago, had an accident in Michigan (several people went to the hospital), another bus was sent, which broke down on the Skyway, another bus was sent, broke down on the Dan Ryan Expressway! If you Google "Greyhound accidents," you will be irate. Please address this issue at once -- the lives of many need much better options for public transportation. Even the drivers are asking for our help in correcting this terrible situation.

miamidadenewbusesontheroadforallroutes

Welcome Mr. Fox! I hope you will add something positive to this vital sector of this Great Country. Please keep in mind that American Truckers in practice, are treated unfairly: under csa we get points on our cdl for accidents even if we are not at fault. On top of that, despite fmcsa licensing requirements, US Dpt of Labor has classified us as unskilled labor, yet, we don't even have minimum wage protection for being interstate workers. US economy needs good truckers to help moving goods across. But with new hos and almost no place to park, how can we make a living? It's really hard for an owner-operator and basically trucking is now in hand of very few large carriers. In the past, economist have said that if small businesses thrive US economy would be more robust. I truly wish you the very best, Cordially, @1jaimeportales on Twitter

Good to see value of time and business support top the list. Time to become leader nation in the automated personal transportation systems that are emerging. 98% of travel is by some form of on demand personal direct to destination means. The $Billions foor more and more mass transit are not helping that, nor the non-driver majority of mass transit users. Automated personal transportation has global appeal and oppurtunity for improving USA trade balance.

Looking forward to advancing Passenger Rail throughout the Mid-west. Ohio continues to face Mobility challenges.

My great-grandfather was an Amish minister. I don't drive a horse and buggy. Secretary Foxx' connection with transportation is a great sound bite but if he believes what he says, he will put Transportation Safety people in FMCSA instead of the truck-hating former law enforcement people we have had to deal with since it's inception.

Yes we do want that: Americans want their time back—not hours of traffic. Americans want transportation that expands—not hinders—business capacity. Americans want 21st century jobs—jobs that they will only find through 21st century infrastructure. Americans want safety—and sustainability. Will he really get it for us? We wish you best of luck in all your endeavors. It's America moves forward. Thanks!