Paul P. Skoutelas, President and CEO of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), recently released the following statement in support of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure’s public transit investments of the Build Back Better Act.
“The American Public Transportation Association (APTA), on behalf of the entire public transportation industry, strongly supports the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure’s title of the Build Back Better Act. The bill creates a new, innovative program to provide $10 billion for competitive grants for public transit access to affordable housing and to enhance mobility for low-income riders and residents of disadvantaged communities. The bill also provides $10 billion to plan and construct high-speed rail and $150 million to better leverage innovative financing tools for high-speed rail projects.
APTA commends this innovative partnership of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to provide critically needed public transit access to affordable housing, a key step in addressing America’s housing crisis. Improving transit access is one of the most important actions we as a nation can take to address inequities in communities. Public transportation creates access to opportunities, including jobs, health care, and education, which can help disadvantaged communities address the equity challenges they face. This unique partnership will create access to opportunities, growth in our communities, and good-paying jobs.
Dedicated investment in high-speed rail will make our economy stronger, our environment cleaner, and help us better compete in the global marketplace—benefits that will sustain their transformative power over time. High-speed rail will better connect our communities and their local and regional transportation networks and help us meet the mobility and climate challenges of our nation.
These critical investments in public transportation in the reconciliation bill prioritize equity, health, job creation, and climate action. Investing in public transit and high-speed rail will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality and public health, and help transform our nation’s transportation network for a sustainable future. We look forward to working with Congress and the Administration to advance the Build Back Better Act and meet the equity, climate, and mobility demands of our cities and communities.”