WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Cory Booker issued the following statement regarding Amtrak President and CEO Wick Moorman’s update on the causes of two recent train derailments that resulted in staggering delays across the Northeast Corridor.
“It comes as no surprise to learn that the recent Amtrak and NJ Transit derailments can largely be attributed to inadequate investment in our region’s infrastructure,” said Sen. Booker. “If we continue down this disastrous track, the nightmare our region’s commuters continue to endure will become our new reality. Crippling delays like these, including those experienced last summer, keep families apart, stifle our region’s economy and undermine our ability to remain globally competitive.
“By proposing to slash federal funding for programs like New Starts, President Trump has broken another promise and all but assured that critical infrastructure projects like Gateway will be brought to a screeching halt. Our region’s commuters deserve better, which is why I will continue to reach across the aisle to find solutions to this crisis,” Sen. Booker concluded.
During yesterday’s Commerce Committee markup, Sen. Booker citied the crippling impact of the recent derailments in opposing the nomination of Jeff Rosen as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) due to Mr. Rosen’s lack of commitment to supporting funding for New Starts and other critical programs for our nation’s infrastructure, including the Gateway Program.
A budget proposal released by the Trump Administration in March zeros-out the New Starts capital grant program, which threatens to terminate work on critical components to the Gateway Program including replacing the Portal Bridge and new trans-Hudson rail tunnels.