State Representative Shelley Taub (R-Bloomfield Hills), who sits as chair of the Transportation subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee has announced her intention to propose a $1 million cut in state funding of the Blue Water and Pere Marquette trains. This will be fast-tracked in budget session June 7, 8 and 9.
MDOT has stated that if this occurs, the $7.1 million requirement to operate the trains cannot be met, and both trains will be eliminated. This is because one contract with Amtrak covers operation of both trains, and there is no fair process to determine which train should be eliminated. The remainder of funds, $6.1 million, would be utilized on other rail needs in the state.
Please let your local legislators know your concern about the proposal to eliminate Blue Water and Pere Marquette train service. If this proposal is adopted by the House Appropriations Committee as part of its State Budget, the Senate is likely to go along with it. It is important to email or call your local State Representative and Senator.
Ridership on the Blue Water has increased 21% year to date April 30,2005 compared to the same period last year. The Pere Marqutee has seen an 11% increase. Michigan residents are continuing to discover the practical, financial and safety benefits of riding the train.
Please take a few minutes to call or email your State representatives now. Leaving a message on their office voice mail is effective. Remember to provide your name and address.
Use MARP’s political contact web page to look up your representative’s or sentator’s contact information. Remember the $1 million reduction is proposed by the Michigan Legislature. Contact your U.S. representative or senator about proposed federal reductions in Amtrak’s budget.
Additional key elected officials to contact are:
Please pass this information along to others as soon as possible.