Trains For America

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New Jersey Senator Menendez backs Amtrak

Menendez is a strong Amtrak supporter and co-sponsor of the authorization bill. Here are a few of his well chosen words, or you can read the entire speech here.

“Every year since 2002 Amtrak has had to continue operations on a yearly basis without adequate funds to maintain the rail system over the long term. It’s almost like a starvation diet – just enough to be temporarily alive, but cutting its funding in such a way that it can neither be successful nor fully survive. Right now the system is at a breaking point. Amtrak’s equipment is aging and no amount of maintenance can keep cars built in the 1950’s on the tracks.

“Amtrak is not just a passenger rail system that serves 25 million people each year. Amtrak is also a program that reduces our greenhouse gas emissions, reduces congestion on our roadways, fights sprawl, creates jobs, and fosters economic activity. I know first hand the benefits of Amtrak because over one hundred thousand New Jersey commuters depend on Amtrak’s infrastructure every day.

“Over the last 35 years we have spent less money on Amtrak than we will on highways in this year alone. We have never committed the same support behind Amtrak that we have for other modes of transportation. This bill will finally give Amtrak a stable amount of authorized funds it needs over the next 6 years to adequately fund its operations and finance capital improvements.”

Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Transportatio Policy

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October 2007


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