(Hauppauge, NY-June 10, 2013) County Executive Steve Bellone has written a letter to Governor Cuomo requesting the re-appointment of Mitch Pally as the Suffolk County representative to the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) Board. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is North America's largest transportation network, serving a population of 15.1 million people in the 5,000-square-mile area fanning out from New York City through Long Island, southeastern New York State, and Connecticut. As Suffolk’s representative to the MTA Board, Pally will work hard to help implement County Executive Bellone’s Connect Long Island plan to connect transit-oriented development projects with Bus Rapid Transit in order to help revitalize our region.
“Mitch has been a staunch advocate for Suffolk County’s transportation needs,” said County Executive Bellone. “ I have had the pleasure and honor of working with him on many transportation initiatives and have witnessed first-hand his commitment to Suffolk County residents and the economic vitality of the Long Island region. Mitch truly understands the future of transportation on Long Island and how it relates to economic development and supports the creation innovative ways to address the transportation needs of Long Islanders.”
“It has indeed been a honor to represent the people of Suffolk County on the MTA board for the past eight years and I am very thankful to County Executive Bellone for having the confidence in me to continue this public service for another term,” said Pally. “The County Executive has set out a very important and forceful policy statement with regard to Connect Long Island and its importance to the economy of Long Island and I look forward to working towards its implementation with my fellow MTA board members. Mass transit is becoming more important every day to all of our residents and I will continue to pursue a variety of initiatives which are in the best interests of our county, our region and the entire State of New York.”
Pally has served on the MTA board since 2005 and has served as the Long Island Chair as well as has been a member of the Capital Program Oversight Committee, Finance Committee, Metro North Committee, and Bridges and Tunnels Committee. He also served as Chief Executive Officer of the Long Island Builders Institute; the largest home building trade association in New York State – in 2010.
Pally had been affiliated with the Weber Law Group of Melville, New York, from 2006 to 2010. Prior to Weber he worked at the Long Island Association, the region's largest business and civic organization from 1985 as director of legislative and economic affairs and in 1992 became vice president for government affairs, responsible for all governmental and community affairs.
He has also held a number of positions in the New York State Legislature. From 1975 to 1985 he served in various capacities to the New York State Senate Committee on Transportation and the Legislative Commission on Critical Transportation Choices, serving both as chief counsel from 1983. During his service to the Senate, he played a key role in drafting such important transportation legislation as the nation's first seat-belt law, a child restraint law, reserved parking space for drivers with disabilities law, and the Transportation Bond Issues of 1983 and 1979, reserved parking spaces for drivers with disabilities, and others.
A public-benefit corporation chartered by the New York State Legislature in 1965, the MTA is governed by a 17-member Board. Members are nominated by the Governor, with four recommended by New York City's mayor and one each by the county executives of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, and Putnam counties. (Members representing the latter four cast one collective vote.) All Board members are confirmed by the New York State Senate.