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Former commish retires from board

Citing a change of direction in his life, a former Hays County Commissioner announced plans to resign as chairperson of an area transportation board.

Will Conley, who has chaired the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (CAMPO) Transportation Policy Board since 2012, said Jan. 14 he intends to step down from the position.

The CAMPO TPB is a 20-person governing body made up of area elected officials, as well as representatives from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) and Capital Metro. The TPB decides CAMPO policy and how federal and state funding for area transportation projects is allocated.

More information and a statement on his resignation is expected to be provided to the public in the coming weeks, Conley said.

Conley served on the TPB while in office as Hays County Pct. 3 Commissioner. In 2017, Conley stepped down from his commissioner’s seat to run for Hays County Judge.

“I’ve had the privilege of serving on the CAMPO board for many years and chairing it for the past six, even to the point of uniquely representing Hays County in the past year as a whole,” Conley said. “For me personally, I’m just at a different point in my life and I will be venturing into many different things across our region, state and nation.”

Conley did not rule out returning to public service, but said he will spend the foreseeable future involved in the private and non-profit sector.

With Conley’s departure, the lone two Hays County representatives on the board are Pct. 2 Commissioner Mark Jones and recently-elected San Marcos Mayor Jane Hughson.

Conley said he is confident in the current leadership that will represent Hays County moving forward.

“Being Chairman was a huge leadership role in our region for a long time and that has been a positive for Hays County,” Conley said. “It put Hays County front and center in the region. That being said, Mark Jones is a great representative for our home. It is my understanding he will continue to represent the county.”

In 2018, CAMPO’s TPB voted to keep Conley as its chairman despite not serving as an active elected official. Conley had served an affiliate non-voting member since that time and had one year remaining on his term.

The decision stirred controversy as keeping a non-elected official on the policy board was unprecedented. Jones was appointed to the board after Conley became a non-voting member.

Conley’s tenure as chairperson marked the first time in CAMPO history that a member outside of Travis County led the TPB. It’s unknown at this time who will fill the chairperson role.

“I want to reiterate what an honor it has been to not only represent Hays but this entire region,” Conley said. “I am proud of our accomplishments and I am looking forward to staying involved in our home in the future.”

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