U.S. Budget Cuts Could Hurt Amtrak

IMG_0934.PNGDon’t wait! Travel now on Amtrak.

If you reside in any southeastern U.S. state or western state not on the Pacific Coast, there’s a very good chance that Amtrak passenger rail service won’t be available in your area after summer 2017. So, you’d better act quickly and book a train trip soon.

We learned about this after speaking with Amtrak officials at the stately train lounge at Union Station in downtown Chicago.  Several historic passenger train routes, among which include the Empire Builder, California Zephyr, and Sunset Limited – trains that shuttle passengers cross-country east-west – are at risk of being discontinued.

For the most part, Amtrak relies on passenger fare, but some support comes from the U.S. government. President Trump has proposed eliminating Amtrak funding for trains such as the Texas Eagle, which “are often the only public transportation to and from rural towns such as Arcadia-Ironton and big cities such as Chicago and St. Louis or Little Rock and Dallas,” said Marc Magliari, a spokesman for Amtrak

So far, Congress has not agreed.

There is a great need for passenger rail to service the needs of average travelers like us, but more especially, to service the needs of those with handicaps or disabilities who cannot drive and prefer not to fly.  We were amazed at just how many handicapped and disabled Americans use Amtrak. We met and saw those who were vision impaired, deaf or hearing impaired, pregnant, or had limited mobility or respiratory issues.

We’re urging everyone reading this blog post to contact their U.S. Senator as soon as possible and urge/petition the government to allow these at-risk Amtrak routes to continue.

For more information, please contact U.S. Congress at (202) 224-3121. Thank you!

 

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