Washington—Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris (both D-Calif.) today issued the following joint statement in response to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao’s exchange with Senator Harris regarding the stalled grant for the Caltrain Peninsula Corridor Electrification Project during a Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works hearing:
“Secretary Chao testified today she cannot issue the full funding grant agreement for Caltrain even though Congress has enacted funds for the project. She said her decision is based on the fact that the president may not request sufficient funds for next year. This would be a mistake.
“Her decision should not be about whether the president will request new funding, but rather about whether she will commit to release any funds Congress provides—both now and in the future.
“Longstanding law requires that any funding for multi-year projects like this ‘shall be carried out through a full funding grant agreement.’ Congress provided $100 million for Caltrain in the recent funding bill, which is in addition to $73 million available from previous years. All of the funding Congress makes available depends on signing this agreement.
“Therefore, we strongly urge Secretary Chao to keep her promise to leverage federal funding for infrastructure by signing the full funding grant agreement for the Caltrain Peninsula Corridor Electrification Project as soon as possible.”