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Rail project fund gains Texas commission backing for state infusion

Earlier this week, the Denton County Commissioners Court passed a resolution supporting efforts to obtain state funding for rail relocation and improvement projects throughout Texas.
In 2005, state voters approved a constitutional amendment establishing the Rail Relocation and Improvement Fund; however, Texas lawmakers haven’t yet dedicated any state dollars for it.
State funding would create a revenue stream that could leverage billions of dollars in bonding authority to improve transportation safety, ease congestion at hundreds of grade crossings, increase the capacity of the state’s freight-rail network, and shift more truck traffic to rail, according to the Texas Rail Relocation and Improvement Association, a statewide coalition of municipal, county and state elected officials, interest groups and residents who seek to improve transportation.
“We believe rail must be a key component of the overall solution to the state’s transportation challenges,” said Bruce Todd, the association’s executive director, in a prepared statement. “Our state cannot simply build more and more roads without rail being incorporated into transportation plans.”

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More News from 12/3/2008