NH is considering commuter rail when most systems in the country are bankrupt. Old technology should be phased out as it will soon be replaced by newer methods of transportation. The recommendation from CATO is that “the industry should stop building new rail lines; replace most existing rail lines with buses as they wear out; pay down debts and unfunded obligations; and target any further subsidies to low-income people rather than continue a futile crusade to attract higher-income people out of their cars.”

From the Cato Institute: Policy Analysis No. 824 – The Coming Transit Apocalypse – October 24, 2017 [PDF]

Excerpt:

“Four trends that are likely to become even more pronounced in the future place the entire industry in jeopardy: low energy prices; growing maintenance backlogs, especially for rail transit systems; unfunded pension and health care obligations; and ride-hailing services.

The last is the most serious threat, as some predict that within five years those ride-hailing services will begin using driverless cars, which will reduce their fares to rates competitive with transit, but with far more convenient service. This makes it likely that outside of a few very dense areas, such as New York City, transit will be extinct by the year 2030, leaving behind a huge burden of debt and unfunded obligations to former transit employees.”

NH should learn from this and prepare for the future and not turn backward to failing technologies. The only way to stop this is to ask the Governor to VETO SB 241 and any other attempts to take NH a step backward.

See this extensive but by no means complete list of commuter rail systems across the nation and abroad, that are in perpetual debt:

Massachusetts — Boston’s MBTA has approximately $5.0 billion in outstanding debt.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/better_government/working-from-facts-on-the-crisis-at-the-mbta/

California — in debt for $100 Billion
https://www.forbes.com/sites/patrickgleason/2018/12/14/jerry-brown-leaves-california-with-100b-train-debt-as-texas-pursues-its-own-rail-boondoggle/#40db0a412b65

Colorado — in debt
https://i2i.org/rtds-death-spiral/

Illinois — in debt
https://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20180614/NEWS10/180619938/metra-suffers-from-lack-of-spending

Minnesota — in debt
http://www.startribune.com/funding-for-southwest-lrt-if-it-looks-like-debt-is-it-debt/392369591/

Maryland — in debt
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trafficandcommuting/maryland-will-use-marc-fare-revenue-to-pay-purple-line-debt-officials-say/2016/04/04/7f2fa850-fa8f-11e5-80e4-c381214de1a3_story.html

Missouri — in debt
https://nextstl.com/2013/05/metro-to-make-400m-debt-payment-expansion-arguments-set-to-begin-again/

New Jersey — in debt
https://www.politico.com/states/new-jersey/story/2019/02/13/new-jersey-pays-amtrak-182m-plans-to-move-forward-together-852613

New Mexico — in debt
https://www.abqjournal.com/1194626/rail-runner-gets-new-payment-plan.html

New York — in debt
https://ny.curbed.com/2018/10/11/17964786/mta-budget-deficit-debt-report-thomas-dinapoli

Philly — in debt
https://www.philly.com/philly/business/transportation/One_of_Phillys_worst_tax_deadbeats_SEPTA_to_have_22M_bill_wiped_from_books.html

Rhode Island — in debt for $10 Million
https://www.providencejournal.com/article/20160319/NEWS/160319157

Texas — in debt
https://www.lonestarvoiceonline.org/2017/03/22/burton-targets-commuter-rail-debt/

China — in debt
https://www.caixinglobal.com/2019-01-29/zhao-jian-whats-not-great-about-chinas-high-speed-rail-the-debt-101375797.html

If the above highly populated areas cannot sustain a train, how can NH? Why can’t we learn from their mistakes???

Please sign the petition and then send this article to the Governor.

https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-commuter-rail-for-nh