May 19--A Corte Madera transportation consultant was appointed to head the Marin County Transit District Tuesday.
Nancy E. Whelan of Corte Madera got the job on a unanimous vote. Supervisors Susan Adams and Kate Sears were absent.
Whelan, a veteran management consultant, will be paid $175,000 a year. The district also will provide a one-time $10,000 contribution to her retirement account.
"I feel very fortunate to work in my community in an industry I love," she said. "I'm really excited to be here." She starts on June 16.
"We're so delighted to have you here," transit board chairwoman Judy Arnold told Whelan.
Whelan was among two dozen finalists winnowed by consultants who "served us very well," added Supervisor Steve Kinsey. "They really cast a wide net" for candidates across the nation.
Whelan, founder of Nancy Whelan Consulting, has provided technical and managerial services to agencies across the Bay Area including the Marin agency.
Whelan has served in posts with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the San Francisco Municipal Railway, where she served as interim manager for three months.
She takes over from interim manager Barbara Duffy. Former manager David Rzepinski relocated to Santa Barbara with his wife, Mona Miyasato, a Civic Center executive who was named county administrator in Santa Barbara.
Also Monday, Marin transit officials, who were facing a tidal wave of red ink a few years ago, adopted a budget that restores $2 million to a contingency fund.
"It's exciting to see those reserves back on the books," said transit director Madeline Kellner, a Novato city councilwoman.
"We have nothing but good news," added Supervisor Arnold, noting the appointment of Whelan as well.
The fiscal 2014-15 program for both operating and capital expenses totals $32.6 million, up from last year's $34.5 million. The budget is based on total revenues of $34.6 million, up from $30 million, reflecting increasing tax and federal paratransit grant revenue on a rebounding economy.
Officials noted the program provides for expanded paratransit and rural services, including service to Fort Baker and to Tomales, as well as restoring the reserve fund, in addition to a range of bus stop, vehicle and related improvements.
The district issued dire warnings several years ago of shortfalls that required dipping deeply into reserve funds.
Contact Nels Johnson via email at email@example.com. Follow him at twitter.com/nelsjohnsonnews
Copyright 2014 - The Marin Independent Journal, Novato, Calif.