Amtrak gets nearly $2 billion in federal spending bill, despite Trump criticism and accidents

Penney Vanderbilt and KC Jones: All About Railroads

Amtrak gets nearly $2 billion in federal funding, rather than a steep cut that President Trump proposed, under a broad spending measure released Wednesday.

Trump had proposed cutting $630 million from the national passenger railroad’s federal subsidies for the year that started Oct. 1, out of $1.4 billion provided the previous year.

“Amtrak’s long-distance trains do not serve a vital transportation purpose and are a vestige of when train service was the only viable transcontinental transportation option,” Trump’s budget said.

But the spending bill provides $1.3 billion for the long-distance network. The bill also provides $650 million to Amtrak for the Northeast Corridor (NEC), the popular route which runs from Washington, D.C., to Boston.

“Amtrak thanks Congress for recognizing the importance of intercity passenger rail and the Northeast Corridor,” Amtrak CEO Richard Anderson said. “The increased NEC capital funding will allow us to address many important needs along the corridor…

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