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BOSTON -- Massachusetts lawmakers voted on Thursday to reject Gov. Charlie Baker’s budget cut for Regional Transit Authorities (RTAs). Massachusetts’ 15 RTAs provide bus service outside of the greater Boston area. If sustained, funding for RTAs’ base operations will increase to $94 million, helping to improve and expand statewide public transit service.
Gov. Baker now has ten days to veto or sign the sections that the Legislature sent back to him. If he vetoes the language, the Legislature has until the end of the calendar year to override the veto.
In response, John Stout, transportation advocate for MASSPIRG, issued the following statement:
“We applaud the state Legislature for committing to better regional transit in Massachusetts. By providing the RTAs with $94 million in base funding, the Commonwealth will be able to build a transportation system that meets our 21st century needs. This is a critical step forward for RTAs and will provide them with much needed resources to expand service for the over 32 million Bay Staters who rely on them.”
Public transportation promotes better public health, mobility, and a healthier environment. As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, we should be doing everything we can to ensure that the entire Commonwealth has access to robust, frequent, and affordable public transit. Investing in the RTAs will help us build back better, and get us on a path to creating a stronger, more sustainable overall transportation system and a better quality of life for all Bay Staters.”
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