Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania Executive Director Josh McNeil issued the following statement in response to President Biden’s visit to Philadelphia today, where the president highlighted the importance of investing in public transportation as part of the American Jobs Plan:
A vibrant public transit system is one of the main drivers of Southeastern Pennsylvania’s economic competitiveness. Our region’s trains, subways, buses and trolleys connect hundreds of thousands of working families to their jobs, to their families and, now, to COVID-19 vaccination appointments. This is particularly true for people of color, who make up more than 70 percent of SEPTA’s ridership.
Yet for decades our region has struggled to fund critical investments that would expand service and improve reliability. Plans to expand service to the Philadelphia Navy Yard and to King of Prussia also continually run up against serious funding constraints.
The American Jobs Plan proposes spending billions of dollars to put area residents to work in good-paying union jobs replacing aging power substations, replacing antiquated rail bridges and even potentially expanding service. Strong Amtrak and SEPTA services are key in the fight against climate change by helping to curb emissions and reduce traffic congestion.
Our Members of Congress must rise up to meet the scale of our twin economic and climate crises by passing this transformative infrastructure plan that helps build a 21st century economy from the working class out.