We urge our elected leaders to do more to reduce and even close the entire gap. We all know that failure to close the entire gap will still mean some service cuts, fare hikes, impact on the workforce, and delays in the capital program. It is disappointing that a state statute has imposed a 50/50 requirement for splitting Virginia’s share of WMATA funding, and that the state is only being asked this year to provide $65 million.
We thank WMATA for its hard work to identify cost savings and efficiencies to reduce the $750 million operating budget gap. We also thank the jurisdictions for proposing $480 million in additional operating funding for FY25. This includes the $150 million promised by Governor Moore and key state legislators.
But we urge our elected leaders to do more to reduce and even close the entire gap. We all know that failure to close the entire gap will still mean some service cuts, fare hikes, impact on the workforce, and delays in the capital program.
E-bike rebate programs have been popular and successful across the US – Most daily trips that Marylanders make are within bikeable distances. Electric-assist bicycles, or e-bikes, can extend the reach of bikes to more people, more destinations, and more trips that are often done by car. Denver, Colorado’s nationally recognized e-bike rebate program in less than a year after it began, helped residents replace over 100,000 miles of car trips per week. The State of Colorado last year launched a popular statewide program.
Metro’s annual public budget hearings are coming up! It’s crucial that we all take action to support more funding for Metro.
We have an opportunity to ensure that Maryland’s transportation investments support its climate goals while giving residents and workers more sustainable options to get to jobs and other destinations – the Transportation and Climate Alignment Act (TCA). This legislation is being considered right now in the Maryland General Assembly, and your legislators need to hear from you!
The TCA (HB 836/SB 681) would require that proposed highway projects be consistent with state greenhouse gas reduction targets and provide affordable, safer, and more sustainable transportation options to offset any increases in traffic and emissions.
Contact your state delegates and senator today to let them know that you support this common-sense approach.
Transportation continues to be the largest source of climate pollution in the state. Maryland is at risk from sea level rise, flooding, heat, and forest fires – the state can’t afford expensive projects that increase climate pollution.
The TCA requires the Maryland Department of Transportation to assess major highway projects and fix any negative climate impacts. If needed, projects that move forward would incorporate measures such as improving and expanding public transit, bike infrastructure, and broadband access, as well as locating jobs and amenities near where people live and near transit. Learn more here.
We thank the jurisdictions for proposing $480 million in additional funding for each of the next two years to help close WMATA’s FY25 and FY26 operating gap. But we urge our elected leaders to do more to reduce and even close the entire gap. Failure to close the entire gap will still mean some service cuts, fare hikes, impact on the workforce, and delays in the capital program.
Maryland estimates it must invest about $1 billion a year in measures to quickly reduce planet-warming pollution to safe levels, which will provide benefits like lower energy costs and less flooding for its residents. However, if the state simultaneously spends billions in public funds on highway expansion, that makes it harder to achieve those climate goals. That problem is what the Maryland Transportation and Climate Alignment Act (TCA) aims to address – making sure transportation projects do not worsen climate pollution and giving people options to travel more affordably and sustainably.
Get ready for an exciting Maryland General Assembly session now through April 8th! There’s a lot at stake – with Metro funding topping our list. To kick it off, we’ll start with our transportation list, but watch for an alert focused on housing, and more specific alerts on important budget hearings and bills.