Washington, DC – Edward Wytkind, president of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD) today commented on the pending markup of the THUD Appropriations bill before the Senate Appropriations Committee:
“The Senate transportation funding bill is a solid step forward in meeting our immediate transportation needs and ensuring that we don’t weaken the nation’s fragile economy by cutting back on job-creating investments. While we know that increased funding levels are needed in all areas of our transportation system, the Committee has crafted a bill that makes the right choices with the limited resources that wrongheaded austerity policies have imposed.
“We’re pleased to see that during a time of record ridership and backlogged needs for upgrade, public transit systems and Amtrak are receiving the funding needed to provide the services people rely on. The bill also ensures continuity for our vital highway and bridge programs and gives states and cities the necessary flexibility to develop multi-modal investment plans. It fully funds the Maritime Security Program (MSP), which promotes our national and economic security. And the bill provides strong funding for aviation which will permit a level of certainty for modernization efforts and for Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) employees who too often have fallen victim to arbitrary funding gaps.
“The Senate bill stands in stark contrast to the pending House version that cuts too many critical transportation programs. While we are pleased that the House bill provides strong funding for the operations of the FAA, it unfortunately imposes deep and unacceptable cuts to Amtrak’s capital budget, transit projects, MSP and other transportation programs. The House bill also includes misguided “policy” riders that undercut jobs and critical safety measures that must be removed.
“We urge lawmakers to adopt a transportation funding plan that closely tracks the Senate version – a bill that will help put people back to work, and which reflects our national needs and priorities.”
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