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9/16/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Another transit security bill enters the House


Yesterday, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee members introduced legislation that would provide transit agencies $3.5 billion during the next three years to improve security.

The Public Transportation Terrorism Prevention and Response Act of 2004 (H.R. 5082) was introduced by committee Chairman Don Young (R-Ala..), and Reps. Tom Petri (R-Wis.), James Oberstar (D-Minn.) and William Lipinski (D-Ill.).

The legislation would enable agencies to obtain grants based on risk and vulnerability assessments. The U.S. departments of transportation and homeland security would update security assessments conducted for the country’s largest transit systems shortly after Sept. 11, 2001, based on agencies’ critical assets, threats to assets and security weaknesses.

H.R. 5082 would appropriate $775 million in 2005, $825 million in 2006 and $880 million in 2007 in capital grants that could be used to improve system protection measures, explosive/chemical detection, surveillance, communications systems, emergency response equipment and evacuation procedures. The bill also would provide $500 million in 2005, $300 million in 2006 and $100 million in 2007 in operations grants for security training, drills, canine patrols and overtime reimbursement.

"We cannot allow ourselves to be less than prepared for future terrorist attacks on systems that carry millions of Americans each day," said Petri in a prepared statement.


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