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Business leaders lobby for more Amtrak funding


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Business leaders lobby for more Amtrak funding

Business leaders from the Northeast today announced a new partnership to lobby for increased federal support for Amtrak.


Twenty-five business leaders from Boston to Washington held a meeting on Capitol Hill and met with several members of Congress to seek more support for the nation’s sole passenger rail system. They focused on lobbying for the Northeast Corridor.


The so-called Business Alliance for Northeast Mobility said Amtrak would help boost the region’s economy by allowing people to travel between major cities quickly.


Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., said if more people ride the trains, road congestion would reduce.


“A lot of people say, trains, their heyday was 100 years ago. I don’t agree with that,” Carper said.


The coalition supports a Senate-approved bill sponsored by Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., which would provide Amtrak with $2 billion a year. A Senate appropriations panel tomorrow considers Amtrak’s funding request for next year.


Lautenberg was not present at the meeting today, though he was scheduled to speak.


His legislation cleared the Senate 70-22 in October, but the House hasn’t taken up Amtrak legislation yet. Carper, who supported the Lautenberg bill, said the House is likely to introduce its version of the Amtrak bill by Memorial Day.


Full story: branding.gif icon_offsite.png - April 3, 2008

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