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TALLAHASSEE, FL - Statement of Florida PIRG Advocate, Brad Ashwell, in response to Vice President Joseph Biden and Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood’s announcement that the administration plans to invest $53 billion over the next six years in high-speed rail.
“With the U.S. population expected to grow by 70 million over the next 25 years and an urgent need to reduce our consumption of oil, we applaud the President and his administration for this bold, new vision for the future.
“The President’s plan to push for more than $50 billion in high speed rail in the next transportation bill shows a commitment to improving our country’s transportation network and competitiveness in the global marketplace.
“While some in Congress have suggested cutting back on new transit and rail projects, the President’s decision to include $8 billion for high-speed rail in his 2012 budget request is exactly the type of investment that is needed to create jobs and jumpstart the economy.
“The future of transportation, with high-speed rail, less reliance on automobiles and a better state of repair won’t happen without strong vision and leadership. We’re glad the President is putting the weight of his office behind getting us there.”
“We hope this show of federal support for high-speed rail will encourage Governor Scott to move forward on the Orlando-Tampa leg of high speed rail.”
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