News Releases

Murray Secures $4.5 million for CENTRAL Washington Transportation and Agriculture Priorities

Nov 18 2005

Agriculture Rail Cars, Yakima Road Improvements, and Ben Franklin, Grant & Valley Transit will receive funding

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash) announced that she has secured $4.5 million for transportation priorities throughout Central Washington. Senator Murray secured the funding as the highest-ranking Democrat on the Senate Transportation, Treasury, the Judiciary and Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Subcommittee.



Today, a House-Senate conference committee approved the FY 2006 spending bill for the departments of Transportation, Treasury, Housing and Urban Development, and other federal agencies. Now the bill goes to the full House and Senate for final passage and then to the President for his signature.

Updated on 11/30/05: The funding listed here is now federal law. President Bush signed these appropriations into law on November 30, 2005.


"In a tough budget year, we're making real investments in our roads, economy and community," Senator Murray said. "This funding will support jobs throughout the region, make our transportation infrastructure safer and more efficient, and strengthen the quality of life that families enjoy throughout Central Washington."



Senator Murray was especially pleased to secure $1 million for the Washington State Produce Rail Car Program.



"For years, Washington growers have been penalized by high transportation costs and difficulty getting rail cars. This funding will provide the rail cars they need to move their produce to market," Senator Murray said.



CENTRAL WASHINGTON PROJECTS

  • Washington State Produce Rail Car Program -- $1 million - There is a critical shortage of railcars for Washington farmers and agricultural shippers who need to move perishable commodities like fruit and vegetables. This project, modeled on the successful Washington Grain Train project, will restore and refurbish rail cars in order to put them in service to help address this shortage and get perishable commodities to ports and other markets. The funding secured by Senator Murray makes this project fully operational. Senator Murray secured $1 million for this project last year.


  • Ben Franklin Transit (Tri-Cities) -- $500,000 - The funding provided will continue construction of Ben Franklin Transit’s new maintenance and operations facility. Senator Murray secured $1.05 million for this project last year.


  • Grant Transit -- $225,000 - The funding provided will enable Grant Transit to purchase a new vehicle to support rural mobility needs. Senator Murray secured $800,000 for vehicle purchases last year.


  • Valley Transit -- $275,000 - The funding provided will enable Valley Transit to purchase a new vehicle to support rural mobility needs. Senator Murray secured $500,000 for vehicle purchases last year.


  • Yakima Grade Separations -- $2.5 million - The City of Yakima has identified a series of grade separations to address traffic congestion through the downtown core. The funding secured by Senator Murray will help complete the project. Senator Murray has previously secured $11.225 million for this project.