On Monday, the President and his Administration submitted its FY 2021 Budget request, which provides $13.2 billion for public transportation, a $303 million increase from the FY 2020 enacted level, as well as $1.8 billion for passenger rail grant programs — a proposed cut of $712 million.
The Administration also outlined a 10-year, $810 billion surface transportation reauthorization. The proposed reauthorization is $75 billion above current law levels, with the Administration stating it wants to work with Congress to identify a combination of budget proposals to pay for the $261 billion gap between Highway Trust Fund revenues and proposed spending levels.
The proposal includes $155.4 billion for public transit over the 10-year period (FY 2021 – FY 2030), with the Administration stating it will submit a comprehensive surface transportation reauthorization proposal in the coming months.
In regards to passenger rail, the proposal includes $16.6 billion for rail infrastructure over the 10-year period (FY 2021 – FY 2030). The Administration proposes that federal operating support for Amtrak's long-distance routes would be provided through a new account and subsequently phased out entirely.
Separately, the Administration proposes an additional $190 billion for other infrastructure improvements. The proposed investments include $60 billion for a new Building Infrastructure Great grants program for "mega-projects", including transit and rail capital investments, and $20 billion for a Transit State of Good Repair Sprint program to reduce the large and growing state-of-good-repair transit backlog.
“We are encouraged by the momentum behind increased investment in public transportation and look forward to working with the Administration and Congress to enact a FY2021 budget and to authorize new surface transportation legislation prior to its expiration on September 30, 2020,” said APTA President/CEO Paul P. Skoutelas. “Providing the necessary investment to bring our public transit systems to a state of good repair and meet growing community demands for increased mobility choices would reap economic and environmental benefits nationwide.”