Local
3:57 pm
Thu September 22, 2011

D. Raja Outlines Plan for Port Authority

Republican candidate for Allegheny County Executive D. Raja touched on some of his ideas to cut costs and streamline the Port Authority of Allegheny County today. Standing under the overhang at the EQT natural gas fueling station in the Strip District, Raja summed up his policy for PAT with three main suggestions: having new employees enter into a 401k defined contribution plan rather than a pension, converting the bus fleet to natural gas, and connecting Oakland, downtown and Pittsburgh International with Rapid Buses. When asked how the Port Authority would pay for the conversion of its fleet to run on natural gas, Raja said industry would help out.

"I've talked to many of the CEOs at natural gas companies and one of the options they've talked about is funding that up-front conversion knowing that we'll be using their gas locally, and that could be a win-win."

He also suggested that private operators continue to pick up routes that the Port Authority no longer services. Raja did not miss an opportunity to jab Democratic candidate Rich Fitzgerald, blaming the problems at the Port Authority on "failed leadership."