U.S. Representatives Judy Biggert and Randy Hultgren released the following statements after meeting with leaders of Chicago-area mass transit authorities and touring the Aurora Transportation Center.
“Mass transit is critical to the economy of Chicagoland, helping constituents get to work while reducing the number of cars on the road and easing traffic congestion,” said Hultgren, a member of the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee. “Congress must act to pass a long-term reauthorization of our nation’s surface transportation programs, and ensure that our tax policies do not discriminate against commuters who take mass transit to work.”
“In our area, transit systems like Metra and Pace provide a vital link to jobs in the city and surrounding suburbs,” said Biggert. “Washington cannot let our transportation systems fall victim to election-year gridlock. I’m going to keep fighting alongside my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for a long-term bill that will allow Illinois transportation managers to plan effectively, invest in roads, and get people to work.”
“Because transit is an economic engine for the Chicago metropolitan area, we need certainty that federal funding will continue in the future,” said RTA Executive Director Joe Costello. “I want to thank Representatives Hultgren and Biggert for their commitment to transit funding that improves the mobility, safety, and economic well being of all those who live and work in our region.”
The Aurora Transportation Center is the western terminus of Metra’s BNSF line, which carries more than 55,000 commuters each day. It also serves as an intermodal connection to nine Pace bus routes. Hultgren and Biggert were among the leaders of a letter signed by more than 30 Representatives from both parties urging Congressional leadership to restore transit benefit parity in any long-term reauthorization legislation.