In a statement released yesterday, the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) expressed its enthusiasm for the impact the new stimulus bill will have on the public transportation industry.
After a year of low ridership and financial devastation suffered by all modes public transportation, including commuter railroads, mass transit operations, and light rail systems, the funding package arrives as some rays of hope regarding getting the COVID-19 virus under some control. Here is the APTA statement:
“Today, President Biden signed into law H.R. 1319, the ‘American Rescue Plan Act of 2021’. This bill provides $30.5 billion in critical COVID-19 emergency funding to help public transit agencies continue to provide a lifeline to essential workers, ensure Americans can get to vaccine distribution sites, and advance communities’ efforts across the country to rebuild our nation’s economy.
“Given the urgent and immense needs of our industry, the American Public Transportation Association applauds enactment of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021,” said Paul P. Skoutelas, president and CEO. “The $30.5 billion in emergency assistance demonstrates a clear and continued commitment to public transportation and the important role it plays in America’s economic recovery.”
“APTA, on behalf of the public transportation industry, commends the incredible work of the Administration and Congressional leaders in crafting this legislation, specifically President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-NY), and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
“We thank each of these leaders, together with the leaders of the U.S. Department of Transportation and key Congressional committees, for including $30.5 billion of emergency transit funding in the bill and distributing these funds in a manner that ensures that all public transit agencies can continue to be a lifeline for our essential workers and help communities rebuild from the economic devastation caused by the pandemic.”