Transportation Leaders and Lawmakers Discuss Transit Funding Options
Congressional Public Transportation Caucus Examines Proposals to Meet 21st Century Transit Needs
Washington D.C. (April 3, 2014) – The Congressional Public Transportation Caucus held a briefing today with several leading industry experts to discuss ways to replace the expiring MAP-21 surface transportation law and provide adequate mass transit funding into the future.
Caucus Co-Chairs Michael Grimm (R-11-NY) and Dan Lipinski (D-3-IL) hosted the briefing in the Rayburn House Office Building, highlighting the importance of the issues facing transit agencies and riders in their districts and across the country.
Leanne Redden — Acting Executive Director at the Chicago Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) and Advisory Board Member of Getting America to Work (GATW) — moderated the panel, which included Jack Basso, former Chief Operating Officer of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials; Jeff Davis, Editor of Transportation Weekly; Rob Healy, Vice President, Government Affairs at the American Public Transportation Association; and Janet Kavinoky, Executive Director, Transportation & Infrastructure at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
“Public transportation ridership is the highest it’s been in decades, yet agencies across the country face diminishing federal funds and rapidly aging transit systems,” Redden said. “We need to address our infrastructure deficit if we plan to save jobs, secure economic growth and ensure the safety of our riders.
Getting America To Work, a national coalition of over 90 transit agencies, is working alongside the Congressional Public Transportation Caucus to educate lawmakers about the critical need to find a long-term solution to transportation funding.
President Obama’s FY 2015 budget request included $302 billion for surface transportation, with $72 billion dedicated specifically to public transit investment. Fully funding that request would generate jobs and help to ensure continued safe and reliable transit for millions of Americans.
“MAP-21 expires in September, which means lawmakers need to move quickly on a sustainable solution that funds transit for the millions of Americans who rely on public transportation to get to and from work every day,” says Redden. “We cannot afford to kick the can down the road on transportation funding any longer.”
Getting America to Work (GATW) is a broad coalition of commuters, business groups, officials and transportation agencies that support vital investments in public transit. For more information, visit www.GettingAmericaToWork.org.