INDEPENDENCE, Ohio, March 24 — President Trump has presented his budget to the American people, and despite making public statements that his administration would spend $1 trillion on infrastructure, his first budget proposal consists of cuts that hurt American workers. Included in this budget is the complete elimination of funding for all long distance Amtrak trains. These cuts would negatively impact rail service in 23 states and along 15 Amtrak routes, and further affect hundreds of thousands of riders a year nationwide.
Along with hampering the ability of Americans to use passenger rail as a mode of transportation, these cuts would also eliminate the jobs of approximately 500 hardworking members of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET), who operate Amtrak trains, and also the jobs of hundreds of members of the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division (BMWED), who repair tracks, bridges and other infrastructure along Amtrak routes. Additionally, the cuts would eliminate jobs in other railroad crafts along Amtrak’s long distance train system. The loss of so many jobs would have a serious impact on the Railroad Retirement System, as employer and employee taxes pay for the system. All railroaders, regardless of employer, would feel the negative impact if these cuts are allowed to happen.
We urge the Trump Administration and members of Congress to fully fund Amtrak on long distance, Northeast Corridor, and state-supported corridor trains.
The Teamsters Rail Conference is urging all Teamster members, families and friends to contact their member of Congress by calling the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121, and ask to speak with the House of Representative member from your Congressional District. Contact information can also be found online here. If you do not talk directly with your member of Congress, then ask to speak to the staff member who handles Labor issues. When speaking to staff, please be respectful just as you would if you were personally speaking with your member of Congress. Also, members can send a customized email to their members of Congress asking them to oppose the Trump budget that does not fully fund Amtrak.
President Dennis R. Pierce
Teamsters Rail Conference
Friday, March 24, 2017