The amended bill, H.R. 1319, would provide $30.5 billion in COVID-19 emergency funding to help public transit agencies survive the economic impacts of the pandemic. This is $500 million more than the bill’s previous version outlined earlier this month. The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on H.R. 1319 Friday, Feb. 26.
APTA President/CEO Paul P. Skoutelas released the following statement in support of the bill:
“The American Public Transportation Association, on behalf of the entire public transportation industry, strongly supports H.R. 1319, the ‘American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.' This bill provides $30.5 billion in critical COVID-19 emergency funding to help public transit agencies continue to provide a lifeline to essential workers, ensure Americans can get to vaccine distribution sites, and advance communities’ efforts across the country to rebuild our nation’s economy.
Based on an independent economic analysis of COVID-19 impacts on public transit funding needs, APTA estimates that public transit agencies face $39.3 billion of additional costs and revenue losses, in addition to the emergency public transit funding provided in 2020.
Given these immense needs, we applaud the inclusion of $30.5 billion of emergency public transit funding provided in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. We also greatly appreciate that the bill distributes these funds in a manner that ensures that all public transit agencies can continue to be a lifeline for our essential workers, ensure Americans can get to vaccine distribution sites, and advance our communities’ efforts to rebuild from the economic fallout of the pandemic.
The time is now to invest more in our nation’s public transportation infrastructure to support jobs, reconnect Americans, and build the necessary infrastructure network to provide critical public transit services and economic opportunities for all.”