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Elections and Politics

Rep. William Straus, Chair of Legislature’s Transportation Committee, Won’t Seek Re-Election

Rep. William Straus, the House Chair of the Joint Committee on Transportation, announced on Thursday that he will not be seeking re-election this year.

A white man with greying brown hair wearing a suit and red tie.
Rep. William Straus of Mattapoisett. Courtesy of the Massachusetts Legislature.

The Mattapoisett Democrat won his first election to the seat in 1992 and has been serving the suburban 10th Bristol County legislative district ever since.

"The current legislative session at the State House will be my last. I will not be a candidate for re-election in November," Straus announced on his Facebook page on Thursday.

Rep. Straus has been the House chair of the Joint Committee on Transportation since 2011.

During that time, he used his position to help convince the state to start work on the South Coast Rail project, which will expand the MBTA regional rail system to New Bedford and Fall River. It's expected to open later this year.

But Rep. Straus's tenure also coincided with a slow, steady decline in the state's financial support for public transportation.

Over the last few years, that neglect has come to the surface in a proliferation of service interruptions, derailments, fires, and even deaths at the MBTA that culminated in a dramatic intervention from the federal government.

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