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Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation
House committee OKs $2.6 billion for FTA's CIG program
The U.S. House Appropriations Committee last week approved a $71.8 billion transportation, housing and urban development funding bill for fiscal-year 2019.
The legislation provides $13.6 billion for the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), marking a $141 million increase over FY 2018. That funding includes $2.6 billion for the FTA's Capital Investment Grant (CIG) program, which provides funding for major transit projects, such as new light-rail lines and commuter-rail systems.
The CIG program is the source of an anticipated $1.17 billion full funding agreement for Sound Transit's Lynnwood Link light-rail extension. Sound Transit Chief Executive Officer Peter Rogoff said that the committee's approval marked a "very positive step toward securing federal funding" for projects like the Lynnwood Link extension.
"Assuming the [FTA] administers these funds in the usual manner and disburses them to projects based on readiness, Lynnwood Link should compete very well for a sizable portion of these funds," Rogoff said in a prepared statement. "Both Lynnwood and Federal Way Link light rail extensions have already received the highest ratings under the FTA's rigorous rating system."
In addition, the committee's bill allocates $1.9 billion for Amtrak, including $650 million for the Northeast Corridor and $1.3 billion for the national network.
The bill also includes $3.2 billion for rail infrastructure and safety programs, along with $262.3 million for rail safety and research programs, according to a committee summary of the bill.
Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.