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Travillion sidelined from Capital Metro as Garza gets a promotion

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 by Caleb Pritchard

Travis County Commissioner Jeff Travillion’s ascension to the Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s board of directors has hit a delay. The Commissioners Court two weeks ago voted unanimously to appoint Travillion to fill out the rest of former appointee Beverly Silas’ term. Silas resigned at the beginning of October after the Austin Monitor reported on racially tinged comments she had made at an August work session. Travillion was set to take the oath of office at Monday’s board meeting, but Capital Metro Chair Wade Cooper announced that the plans had been upended. “Last week, a legal question was raised regarding who the county can appoint to the position,” Cooper explained without further elaboration. He said the agency is working with the county to sort the issue out and that in the meantime, Travillion was deferring his swearing-in. An agency spokesperson referred the Monitor’s inquiries to County Attorney David Escamilla, who did not return a phone call. Nor did Travillion respond to a request for comment. Without a replacement for Silas on the dais, Cooper postponed action on appointing her replacement as head of the board’s Operations and Planning Committee. However, the board unanimously elected Council Member Delia Garza to Silas’ former role as vice chair. “I think we’re at a critical time in this city as we reform our Land Development Code,” Garza remarked after the appointment. “There’s a very interconnected nature between our Land Development Code and transit and I look forward to respectfully pushing our staff to make sure we’re equitably serving our community.” The board will meet again on Tuesday for a work session to discuss potential alterations to the Connections 2025 service plan. Its next full voting session is on Nov. 15.

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