On Wednesday, Michael Terry, the president and CEO of the Indianapolis Public Transportation Corp. (IndyGo), testified before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit on behalf of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and its 1,500 member organizations.
IndyGo is a bus-centric public transportation agency that serves more than 820,000 people. Terry testified that federal public transportation policy must focus on the continued solvency of the Highway Trust Fund, stating that the fund has not seen an increase in more than 25 years and its purchasing power has decreased by 40%. This has led to chronic underfunding and a $90 billion state-of-good-repair backlog for public transportation.
"APTA continues to advocate for increased investment in public transportation from all levels of government, but the federal partnership remains absolutely critical. IndyGo can attest to the importance of ensuring a federal role in public transportation," Terry said. "Our voters passed a local income tax referendum to support a Transit Plan that will provide expanded frequency and hours of service on our fixed-route network."
He continued, "Without a federal partnership, we would not be able to efficiently operate the increased local network and three rapid transit corridors. Several U.S. Department of Transportation grants have been critical to the success of our Transit Plan."
Additionally, Terry noted the vital role of Capital Investment Grants in providing upgraded service to communities across the country. He also cited the growing role that public transportation providers play as the hub of the new mobility paradigm, connecting the multitude of public transit options into a seamless network.