Amtrak, MTA CEOs react to COVID aid funding

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Amtrak CEO Bill Flynn and New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority CEO Patrick J. Foye have both reacted positively to the COVID-19 relief funding included in a bill passed by Congress on Monday. Amtrak received $1 billion in relief funds, while transit agencies will receive $14 billion.

In a statement issued Tuesday, Flynn thanked Congress for the funding, and continued, “We thank Congress for passing the annual spending and COVID relief bill that will provide an additional $1 billion in emergency funding. While this COVID funding is intended to be a temporary band-aid that will help Amtrak and our state and commuter partners, it is critical for minimizing negative impacts to our customers, employees and service between now and the end of March.” Flynn also said the passenger railroad will “look forward to working with the next Congress and new Administration on additional [fiscal 2021] funding so we can restore service, bring back furloughed employees and continue our progress on vital capital projects.”

In a Monday interview on WCBS radio, Foye called the funding “great news,” said the agency would receive $4 billion, “and that will put us in a position where we won't have to dramatically drastically cut back service on subways and buses, the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-north, and lay off 10,000 of our colleagues.”

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