5 Things to Know about Long-term Funding for Public Transit
Congress deserves a big thank you for supporting essential services—including public transportation—in the American Rescue Plan Act. Emergency funding has been provided several times in the last year, but this funding is focused on keeping our transit systems running throughout the pandemic and isn’t part of a long-term solution.
Now we need lawmakers to look past the current crisis and focus on improving our transportation networks for the long term. Congress and the Administration are beginning to discuss major infrastructure legislation. Lawmakers must also tackle transportation funding before the extension of the 2015 Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act expires later this year.
No matter what path Congress follows to help our nation keep moving forward, one central point should guide the debate: public transportation depends on long-term funding to help communities succeed.
5 Key Reasons for Long-term Funding
Long-term public transportation funding provides certainty for communities to move forward with significant public transit projects. Here are five reasons why long-term funding is essential for public transportation:
Before Congress passed the soon-to-expire FAST Act in 2015, lawmakers enacted 36 short-term bills—sometimes with just weeks of funding. This left public transit systems around the country uncertain about their ability to fund new projects, and communities could not plan public transit projects without reliable federal support. We must not let this happen again!
Every American—rural and urban, in red and blue states alike—deserves access to reliable, affordable transportation. We’ll be raising our voices this year to urge Congress to renew their long-term commitment to public transit on behalf of all Americans.