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Stimulus bill to include nearly $20 billion for rail projects, APTA says


On Wednesday, House and Senate negotiators reached a compromise on the American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (H.R. 1/S. 1), which is expected to total $789 billion. Now, the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) has detailed what the bill would include for transportation funding.

The final bill proposes $8.4 billion for public transportation. Half of the funds must be obligated within 120 days of the legislation's passage. Until final legislative language is released, it's unclear exactly how the funds will be distributed within the program, APTA said.

The bill also proposes $8 billion for high-speed rail corridor development, a significant increase compared with the $2 billion originally proposed by the Senate. In addition, $1.3 billion would be available for Amtrak and intercity passenger-rail grants to states.

The economic stimulus package also would include $1.5 billion for a new intermodal discretionary program that could be used for highway, bridge, public transportation, passenger- and freight-rail and port infrastructure projects.

The House and Senate are expected to approve the legislation this weekend, according to APTA.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 2/13/2009