The House Committee on Appropriations’ Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Subcommittee recently passing the fiscal year 2012 budget, which would effectively eliminate state-supported and long-distance Amtrak train service. In light of this, TCU and Rail Labor have partnered with the National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP) and other groups to help educate the riding public how disastrous this budget would be for Amtrak and its employees.
Together we are educating the public by distributing a flyer on Amtrak trains and stations. We encourage everyone to contact their Congressman and tell them to support increased investment in Amtrak, not cut it.
Click here to view or download the flyer.
This budget would prohibit the use of federal funds provided to Amtrak to fund any operating costs of state-supported trains. It penalizes states that have made investments in passenger rail, some of which have contributed toward costs for nearly 40 years.
Amtrak President and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Boardman called the proposal “shortsighted.”
“It will result in the loss of jobs and reverses significant progress made to use passenger rail to reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil,” Boardman said. The proposal comes during a year when the national intercity passenger railroad has served a record number of riders, Amtrak officials noted.
The 15 states that provide state support to Amtrak service are California, Illinois, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.
Don’t kid yourself into thinking this could never happen, Congress means business. This is another way for the GOP to achieve their goal of privatizing Amtrak. The time for action is now!