Ko wants city gov’t-borough chief hotline

By Chi-hao James Lo ,The China Post

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (�_����) said yesterday that he has tasked the Taipei City Department of Civil Affairs with the establishment of a communications hotline with Taipei City borough chiefs. Ko made the statement in his opening speech while attending the 12th Taipei City Borough Chiefs’ Occupational Development Event at Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall. The event was attended by 420 of 456 Taipei borough leaders, marking the highest recorded attendance of the event in recent years at a 90 percent turnout rate. In his speech Ko said that he had some ideas he wanted to share with his audience regarding the job description of a borough chief. One of which, Ko said, was to have the Taipei City Department of Civil Affairs collaborate with the Department of Legal Affairs to establish the Taipei City Borough Chiefs Autonomous Regulations (�x�_�������۪v����), which would clearly define the authority and occupational description of a borough head and his subordinates. Ko went on to say that borough chiefs stand at the front line of the Taipei City political infrastructure and serve as the central nervous system of the city government, as they are always in direct contact with their district residents. As such, a direct communications window must be established so that local issues can be dealt with expediently. The mayor also said that as the city itself has 456 boroughs, it would be difficult to visit them one by one. However, the difficulty has inspired him to divide the boroughs into groups that will take turns every week to meet face to face with the mayor, enabling direct communications between the mayor and the borough chiefs at least once a year. In his concluding statement, Ko said that he has already tasked Department of Civil Affairs Commissioner Lan Shih-tsung (�ť@�o) with the development of an official plan.

Ko Firm on Reconstruction of Intercity Bridge Ko remains firm in his decision to reconstruct the Taipei Chong Yang Bridge (�����j��). The bridge is one of the most frequently used connection routes for commuters in both Taipei and New Taipei City. Ko made the announcement on Jan. 6, citing that the motorcycle lane on the bridge has led to more than 200 accidents in the last four years. The motorcycle lane is also infamous among riders for its hard hairpin. Reportedly, the mayor started budgeting for the project yesterday, hoping to start reconstruction efforts in the near future.