Trains For America

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Springfield aldermen balk at Amtrak station repairs

Mark Davis of Union Pacific reads TFA. Mark, we come in peace.

This would be kinda’ funny if it were not so gosh-darned serious.

Union Pacific is APPARENTLY unaware that it owns the Springfield, Ill. Amtrak station. This is the historic site of the Abraham Lincoln funeral train arrival and the building was constructed late in the 1890s. It was part of my family railroad (GM&O) and photos of the structure are on many GM&O annual reports (including inside, which looks rather similar to the lobby today).

Well, some smarty pants city government guy has his shorts in a knot demanding to know IF UP owns the building and IF UP has been paying taxes. (Footnote: interesting that cities just expect railroads to pay taxes while airlines just exist in taxpayer supported airports).

Hell fire! This is a theological issue and well beyond our poor pwoer to add or subtract. The State Journal-Register did its typical excellent job reporting the colorful debate.

Some aldermen on Monday questioned plans to spend $571,500 in downtown tax increment finance money to refurbish Springfield’s Amtrak station.

Filed under: Amtrak, Passenger Rail Politics

One Response

  1. Allan says:

    Pat-“Footnote: interesting that cities just expect railroads to pay taxes while airlines just exist in taxpayer supported airports.”

    Airlines pay rent on their slots at the airport. The railroads own the property therefore must pay property taxes like other property owners. Airlines do pay property taxes on the land they own. They also pay many orther taxes and fees. How much does Amtrak pay?

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