New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Pennacchio Looks for Efficiency in Rail Lines

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State Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris, Passaic), a member of the Senate Budget and appropriations Committee, has asked the non-partisan Office of Legislative Services (OLS) to investigate how national efforts of regionalizing rail services could apply to New Jersey and New York rail lines. In light of a recent article in The Record which describes a potential $5 billion cost over run on the Access to the Region’s Core (ARC) rail tunnel, the Senator wants to make sure that New Jersey utilizes every avenue of efficiency and cost savings prior to building the ARC Tunnel. Recently, Governor Christie has put a 30 day moratorium on the project to study the cost overruns.

“AMTRAK has recently announced the construction of an additional rail tunnel under the Hudson,” Pennacchio stated. “Who is coordinating the rail transportation efforts? It makes no sense to have two redundant tunnels one built by ARC and another built by AMTRAK. It is quite possible, even probable that turf battles with different bureaucracies running the rail lines, AMTRAK, LIRR, PATH and New Jersey Transit contribute to inefficiencies and redundant services ramping up the high cost of rail transportation.”

“It only takes a little common sense to realize that consolidating our rail concerns to regional entity similar to the cooperation that exists at the southern end of the state would save the state, taxpayers and commuters time and money,” Pennacchio continued. It doesn’t make sense to build additional rail infrastructure while these competing lines aren’t using existing platforms, lines and tunnels as efficiently as possible.”

Pennacchio concluded by expressing disappointment at New Jersey’ U.S. Senators Lautenberg and Menendez. It appears that our Senators are more concerned with preserving the disorganized status quo. They should be fighting for the best interests of New Jersey citizens, not an inefficient rail tunnel to Macy’s basement.”

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