In its role as the county transportation commission, OCTA serves as the transportation planning agency responsible for planning, developing and funding Orange County’s transportation programs and services. Recently, OCTA CEO Darrell E. Johnson participated in several regional events.
The Self-Help Counties Coalition’s (SHCC) 31st annual Focus on the Future Conference provided a forum for self-help counties and other transportation agencies, elected officials and private sector representatives to share experiences and highlight upcoming projects. Originally scheduled for a Newport Beach venue with OCTA as the host agency, the conference was instead conducted virtually featuring pre-recorded welcome messages from OCTA Chairman Steve Jones and Johnson. OCTA’s CEO also took part in a live moderated panel discussion with other SHCC CEOs that focused on the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its impact on SHCC expenditure plans. He shared how OCTA accelerated work on some construction projects due to reduced traffic at the beginning of the pandemic when the state’s original stay-at-home order was in place.
At two meetings of the Regional Chief Executive Officers, Johnson conferred with transportation stakeholders and CEOs from throughout the Southern California region to discuss issues of mutual interest and concern.
During the meeting of the Mobility 21 Board of Directors, Johnson was elected as Chair for the upcoming year. Mobility 21 is a transportation advocacy coalition and its Board of Directors is comprised of the leaders of Southern California’s transportation agencies and business organizations. The Board meets monthly to tackle regional transportation issues facing Southern California and works together to develop solutions.
Johnson also participated in a meeting of county transportation commission CEOs and Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) that focused on the need for Caltrans to support highway projects as well as the importance of collaboration and flexibility regarding the use of local models to assess vehicle miles traveled (VMT) impacts. SCAG is the nation’s largest metropolitan planning organization and undertakes a variety of planning and policy initiatives to encourage a more sustainable Southern California.