Again, I want to thank the United States Congress and especially members of the Illinois delegation for the support of public transportation in our region and nation. Last week’s passage of the five year Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act), which includes $61 billion for public transportation nationwide, will benefit regional riders of CTA, Metra, Pace Suburban Bus and Pace ADA Paratransit.
This multi-year surface transportation law is critical to our region’s continued success as well as our ability to attempt to address our ongoing state of good repair needs. It is estimated that the increased levels of funding in this bill could translate to more than $250 million in additional formula funding over a five year period for our region, As the RTA Board prepares to consider the regional transit budget for 2016 next week, which includes a an estimated $872 million in capital funding in 2016, this long-term, consistent funding is a real bright spot for our region given the level of uncertainty associated with the budget impasse occurring at the state level.
I look forward to the RTA Board considering and approving the regional budget next week and to continuing to work with CTA, Metra and Pace to meet the daily needs of the region’s transit riders.