T4A Calls for Action Against Dreadful House Transpo Budget

Transportation for America is gearing up for a fight over transit, rail, and TIGER funding, and they’re asking supporters of smart transportation investments to make their voices heard.

The new budget put forth by the House of Representatives would zero out funds for TIGER, strip $400 million from Amtrak and raid $500 million from a fund for, of all things, repairing bridges.

The House and Senate have proposed two very different funding plans for transportation. Image: ##http://action.smartgrowthamerica.org/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=14807##Transportation for America##

But cooler heads and clearer vision prevailed at the Senate, where appropriators put forward a budget that would expand funding for transit and TIGER. The Senate proposal would also help Amtrak keep up with growing demand.

Projects like the Atlanta streetcar and Chicago’s Blue Line rehab were made possible with the help of TIGER, an innovative, merit-based transportation funding program for which demand has been overwhelming. Eliminating TIGER would close off a vital mechanism to fund cost-effective projects that curb traffic, improve safety, and reduce car dependence.

Transportation for America calls the House budget “unabashedly bad” and has issued an action alert asking supporters to contact their Senators to support a budget that invests more in sensible transportation options.

  • Fred

    Chicago’s Blue Line was last extended in 1984…

  • Thanks. We meant the rehab project.

  • Drew Levitt

    The House is always advancing preposterous proposals; do we have any sense that their transpo funding plan is being taken more seriously than, say, the perennial call to defund the National Endowment for the Arts?

  • Ben Kintisch

    On the other hand, I’m guessing no dramatic cuts in road building. Or oil subsidies…need I continue?

  • John Dough

    Amtrak’s record ridership = more passengers = more ticket sales = more revenue =

    …more Government subsidies?

    WTF!? Will it never end?

  • Anonymous

    John,

    I find myself wondering the same about highways and airplanes; when will the subsidies ever end?

    And their subsidies are much larger in total dollars than Amtrak’s are and make a much bigger dent in your wallet. Not to mention that those subsidies are the reason that Amtrak even exists. If the Government hadn’t interfered in the Free Market by subsidizing flying & driving, long distance passenger rail service would still be privately owned & operated and requiring zero subsidies.

  • überfahr

    Parking, roads, and freeways = record traffic congestion ? tolls to collect revenues from polluting cars and drivers that require more more health care $$ … more Government subsidies? WTF!? Will it ever end? (doubtful given the entitlement perceived by motorists ..e.g., comment above)

  • Jack Jackson

    Amtrak needs to retool it’s long distance trains…those are the money bleeders

    The State supported corridors are doing quite well

  • John Dough

    The state supported corridors are doing well BECAUSE they are state supported corridors. Take away the state support and you have failure.

  • Anonymous

    Jack,

    As much as it pains me to agree with John, as he and I rarely agree on anything, he is at least partially correct. The State supported corridors do look better in part because of the State Subsidies.

    This is not to say that all State supported corridors would look bad without State Support. For example, the State sponsored service between Lynchburg Va and DC is not only not being supported by the State of VA, it’s actually making an profit for the State. And the new service between Norfolk VA and DC covered 96% of its costs during its first 6 months of operations.

    And the fact that some of the trains do require support does not constitute failure. If making money and zero subsidies is the standard, then highways are a failure. And airlines are also a failure.

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