Rail Bills | Mass. Legislature

Current bills filed in the Massachusetts General Court (the legislature) that affect passenger and/or freight rail service in our region of the state.

A check mark indicates that Trains In The Valley supports the proposed bill.

 


Study of rail service between North Adams, Greenfield and Boston

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Bill S.2054 — “An Act to examine the feasibility of rail service between North Adams, Greenfield and Boston”

 

Presenter | Sen. Jo Comerford (Hampshire, Franklin and Worcester)

Summary | This bill instructs the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to conduct a feasibility study relative to rail service between the cities of Boston and North Adams.

 


Study of Rail Service between Pittsfield and Boston via Springfield

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Bill S.2107 — “An Act to study the feasibility of high-speed rail access between Pittsfield and Boston via Springfield”

 

Presenter | Sen. Eric Lesser (First Hampden and Hampshire)

Summary | This bill instructs the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to conduct a feasibility study relative to high-speed rail service between the cities of Pittsfield, Springfield and Boston.

Commentary | This bill is moot since MassDOT has now started the process to formally study the feasibility of passenger rail service up to and including high speed rail from Boston to Springfield and Pittsfield.

 


Regional Transportation Ballot Initiatives

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Bill S.1694 — “An Act relative to regional transportation ballot initiatives”

 

Presenter | Senator Eric P. Lesser (First Hampden and Hampshire)

Summary | This bill would enable one or more municipalities in the commonwealth to raise funds for local and regional transportation investments through voter-approved ballot initiatives.

Commentary | Regional ballot initiatives are used to finance transportation investments in states all across the country (including California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, and Washington.)

More than 300 transportation ballot measures appeared on the November 2016 ballot, including over forty ballot measures that focused on public transit investments totaling over $200 billion. The majority of the measures were approved. (A listing of recent transportation ballot measures can be found on this link: 2016 Transportation Ballot Measures.)

 

Further reading

“Want Transit? Get It on the Ballot!”
By Gabrielle Gurley | The American Prospect | October 28, 2016

Moving Forward with Funding
New strategies to support transportation and balanced regional economic growth
MassInc | October 2011

“The ‘Millionaire’s Tax’ Is Dead. Here’s Another Way To Pay For Transportation”
By Frederick Hewett | WBUR | June 20, 2018

 

 

Page last updated: March 20, 2019
Page last reviewed: February 7, 2017