Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) is trying to spearhead efforts to increase transit funding in the fiscal-year 2011 Transportation-HUD Appropriations bill. He recently joined 66 colleagues in sending a letter to the House Appropriations Committee requesting $14.9 billion in funding for federal transit programs, which would represent a significant boost from the $10.8 billion requested in President Obama’s FY2011 budget.
Public transportation agencies are finding it difficult to keep up with ridership demand and, instead, are proposing fare hikes, service reductions and job cuts, said Nadler in a prepared statement.
“This situation is likely to worsen as state and local governments are forced to make budget cuts in the face of the recession and revenue shortfalls,” he said. “As we delve into our appropriations process for the coming year, it is essential that we provide sufficient federal funding to maintain our public transportation systems and increase their efficiency for riders.”
The funding request of $14.9 billion matches the American Public Transportation Association’s (APTA) estimate of how much it would cost to keep transit systems in a state of good repair and accommodate a projected doubling of ridership during the next 20 years, said Nadler.
The congressional efforts to increase transit funding are supported by APTA, the Transport Workers Union, Amalgamated Transit Union and Transportation for America, he said.
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