Sen. Bob Casey calls on Congress to fully fund SEPTA

U.S. Sen. Bob Casey
U.S. Sen. Bob Casey wants the federal government to step in with a permanent funding solution for SEPTA. Credit: Rikard Larma/Metro

Four days after SEPTA released its “doomsday plan” outlining drastic service cuts the transit system will need to undertake if additional funding is not allocated, U.S. Sen. Bob Casey called on Congress to “begin work on a long-term transportation bill that could increase funds and provide more certainty to SEPTA,” according to a release from Casey’s office.

The Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act, which provided billions in surface transportation funding, was signed by President Barack Obama in July 2012 and will expire in about a year, leading to a series of short-term extension bills that have plunged transit agencies like SEPTA into uncertainty regarding their future funding outlook.

Casey is urging the federal government to instead develop and pass a long-term reauthorization bill financed by the Highway Trust Fund, which itself is underfunded and will become insolvent by 2015 if no action is taken.

“Public transit is a major part of Southeastern Pennsylvania’s economy and it’s essential that SEPTA has the resources it needs to continue to provide safe and reliable transportation,” Casey said in a statement.

“Careening from one short-term transportation bill to another has increased uncertainty for agencies like SEPTA. Congress should begin work now on a long-term transportation bill that allows public agencies to plan into the future. A comprehensive and long-term approach to transportation can create jobs and improve economic growth.”

The release notes SEPTA’s total ridership in 2012 hit a 23-year record with 339.3 million passenger trips, representing a growth of 40 million trips since 2006.

Casey sent a letter urging action to members of the Senate committees on finance and on environment and public works, and the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

“As transit agencies face shrinking contributions from states and municipalities, we need to provide consistent federal funding,” he wrote.

“Failure to do so could result in cuts to routes that commuters depend upon and, ultimately, job losses.”

He noted SEPTA relies on formula funding from the Moving Ahead for Progress act to cover more than half of its capital budget and needs steady investment from the federal government to maintain the agency’s infrastructure and replace outdated buses and rail cars.

“A series of extensions of MAP-21 would only cause further uncertainty to transit agencies like SEPTA,” he concluded.

“I look forward to working with you to develop and pass a long-term reauthorization bill.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

New Apple devices include default kill switch

By Marina LopesWASHINGTON (Reuters) - New Apple Inc phones include a theft deterrent system that enables users to lock their devices and wipe them clean…

National

PHOTO: Photographer comes face-to-face with deadly crocodile

A deadly crocodile comes face-to-face with a courageous photographer, who manages to take a set of jaw-dropping pictures of the teeth-baring reptile.

Local

Brooklyn packed for annual West Indian Day Parade

Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway was packed Monday with an estimated one million people showing up on Labor Day to celebrate West Indian culture.

Local

James Michael Tyler on Gunther, Central Perk and…

We spoke with Gunther (James Michael Tyler) at the preview for new pop-up Central Perk, based on the cafe in "Friends."

Going Out

Where to eat and drink during Oktoberfest in…

Paulaner In the Bowery, this Bavarian restaurant/brewery will start the celebrations at 8 p.m. Saturday with the premiere of master brewer Andreas Heidenreich’s Oktoberfest brew.…

Going Out

Where to celebrate Oktoberfest in NYC

Germany is a land of contradictions — is there an explanation for how the same country produced lederhosen and Rammstein? But they all managed to agree…

Going Out

Things to do in NYC this weekend, Sept.…

BEHIND THE SCENES New York on Location Sept. 21, 11 a.m. Kaufman Astoria Studios 36 Street between 34 and 35 avenues, Astoria Free, www.movingimage.us Have…

Going Out

5 things to do in NYC this weekend,…

Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival Sept. 18-22, various times The Bell House, 149 Seventh St. Union Hall, 702 Union St. $10-$20, www.eugenemirmancomedyfestival.com In addition to the usual…

NFL

Eric Decker 'unlikely to play' against Bears: Source

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker's status for Monday night’s game against the Bears is in doubt after he missed practice again Wednesday.

NFL

Preston Parker, not Odell Beckham, will replace Jerrel…

Tom Coughlin noted the next man up will be unheralded veteran Preston Parker.

NFL

NFL Week 3 full schedule (kickoff time, TV)

NFL Week 3 full schedule (kickoff time, TV)

NFL

Fantasy football: Run with Knile Davis, Khiry Robinson,…

Fantasy football: Run with Knile Davis, Khiry Robinson, Donald Brown

Sex

Why don't more couples use condoms?

  Call it the “condom moment.” That’s the name the authors of a new study have given to the pivotal conversation every couple should be…

Sex

Need an idea for a first date? Here's…

Picture your idea of a nice first date. Is it dinner and a movie? A visit to an interesting museum exhibit? Instead, an expert on…

Career

Here's why the newly-crowned Miss America deleted her…

Miss America pageant winner Kira Kazantsev quietly deleted her LinkedIn profile this week after her work history came under attack by conservative critics. Many of the…

Career

Zosia Mamet explains why leaning in is not…

Zosia Mamet is living proof that even if you don't think you can get a job you're going for, you should still try. Along with…