TRANSPORTATION, TREASURY, AND INDEPENDENT AGENCIES APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2004
SPEED RAIL STUDY
Mr. KOHL. Mr. President, I would like to engage in a colloquy with the ranking member of the subcommittee, the Senator from Washington, PATTY MURRAY. I would like to refer to the Midwest Regional Rail Initiative which appears in the "Next Generation High-Speed Rail Program" at $250,000. This project is a collaborative effort of nine States in the Mid-West, AMTRAK and Federal Railroad Administration. This is a 3,000 mile system plan and I am concerned that $250,000 will not enable us to fully address the environmental and engineering associated with such a large regional system. Due to the extreme budget constraints facing this subcommittee I understand that it may be difficult to find additional resources for this study. However, I have been told that it would be helpful to the Mid-West Rail Coalition if prior contributions made by member States for planning activities prior to January 1, 2001 can be counted as the required State-match under this account. I am hopeful that you will support this effort as we move to conference on this appropriations bill.
Mrs. MURRAY. The Senator from Wisconsin has highlighted an important nine-State effort regarding high-speed rail and I will do all I can in Conference to accommodate the Senator's concerns.