Ranking Member Crawford Statement from Hearing on Funding the Freight & Passenger Rail Network
Opening remarks, as prepared, of Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials Ranking Member Rick Crawford (R-AR) from today’s hearing entitled, “Funding a Robust Freight and Passenger Freight Rail Network”:
As the Committee looks at reauthorizing surface transportation programs, it will assess how best to fund our railroad system to meet our Nation’s future needs. It is important to fairly balance the needs of freight and passenger rail so that each industry may continue to grow in the coming years.
We must ensure that our Nation’s passenger rail system runs efficiently and on time and uses federal funds in a way that is transparent and best serves the needs of passengers.
Likewise, we must ensure that our freight rail networks can operate effectively, and that they have proper funding for important maintenance and safety upgrades.
We also must balance the interests of busy urban areas like Chicago with the needs of our rural areas. Focusing only on a few large, congested hubs ignores the vast rural areas throughout the country that are equally as important to the stability and success of the rail industry.
Finally, efficient and effective use of federal funds is a top priority. It is very import to make sure the money appropriated is easily accessible and used effectively.Click here for more information, including witness testimony.