“On behalf of the 1,500 public- and private-sector member organizations of APTA, we applaud the Senate for passing H.R. 6147, which includes the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) Appropriations Act of 2019 (S. 3023). This legislation provides significant additional funding for public transportation above the levels authorized by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act.
“Specifically, the THUD bill provides $16.1 billion for public transportation and intercity passenger rail, including $13.6 billion for public transportation and $2.5 billion for intercity passenger rail grants. These funding levels are $1.3 billion more than authorized by the FAST Act for fiscal year 2019.“This strong investment in public transit is directly tied to growing America’s economy. Eighty-seven percent of public transit trips directly benefit the economy by getting people to work and connecting them to local businesses. In fact, 71 percent of government funding for public transit flows through the private-sector, supporting millions of jobs. This investment puts America on a path to help address the nation’s $90 billion public transportation infrastructure backlog identified by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Moreover, a recent APTA study found that failing to modernize this infrastructure results in a $340 billion loss in business revenue over a six-year period.
“In addition, we commend the Senate for addressing concerns raised by the public transportation industry regarding the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) new policies of the Capital Investment Grant (CIG) program. The bill, as passed, includes an amendment offered by Senate THUD Appropriations Ranking Member Jack Reed (D-RI) that prohibits FTA from implementing new policies outlined in its June 29 CIG ‘Dear Colleague’ letter. We hope that FTA will use this opportunity to restart the process and engage the public transportation industry in a dialogue to better understand the impacts of any proposed changes to CIG policies.
“These actions taken by the Senate will help move investment in America’s public transit infrastructure forward and help communities of all sizes create economic growth.”