November 15, 2019 - -

The House Rail & Infrastructure Subcommittee on Rail held a hearing the Amtrak reauthorization on November 13, examining current-day challenges and future opportunities for passenger rail in the U.S. Rail Passengers Association President Jim Mathews testified as part of the panel—which also included representatives from Amtrak, railroad labor, and state transportation officials—arguing that Amtrak is an essential engine for economic growth in town across the country, and that we cannot cut our way to a sustainable national rail network.

The hearing, titled “Amtrak Now and Into the Future,” focused on the funding challenges facing this Congress if it’s going to change the transportation status quo in this country, and overcome decades of underinvestment in passenger trains. T&I Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-OR) attacked the anemic funding levels at the root, challenging the idea that Amtrak—alone, out of all the transportation modes—should have to make a profit.

Read more: