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Local government leaders, private sector executives get behind bill to expand MTA funding

Posted at 9:42 AM, Jan 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-11 17:37:28-05

BALTIMORE — On Monday, many gathered outside the Johns Hopkins Metro Station in support of new legislation to significantly increase funding for Maryland's public transit system.

The Transit Safety and Investment Act, is sponsored by state legislators, Senator Cory McCray and Delegate Brooke Lierman.

It aims to provide the MTA with the money needed to address a host of issues they say have been put off for too long.

That includes maintenance, more buses and bus shelters, rail and track improvements, upgrades to safety and security systems, and expanding on environment-friendly technology.

"Every year, more Marylanders are being stranded by our inadequate public transit system. Whether you live in central Maryland, the Eastern Shore, or the DC Suburbs, you deserve reliable transit And yet, MTA has a gap of over $2 billion in the next ten years between what it needs to keep operating - and failing,” said Lierman.

Both lawmakers cited a needs inventory put together by the Federal Transit Administration's, State of Good Repairs, which calls for the MTA to receive more than $550 million annually, as opposed to the $326 million it's slated to get through 2025.

Many of the bill's supporters were on hand Monday including Michael McMillan, President of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1300, which represents MTA workers, Johns Hopkins University President Ronald J. Daniels, and executives from Tradepoint Atlantic.

Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott along with County Executives Johnny Olszewski, Steuart Pittman and Calvin Ball of Baltimore, Anne Arundel and Howard Counties were also in attendance to back the proposed legislation.