MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Some good news for Eastern Panhandle commuters out of the recently passed West Virginia budget.
MARC commuter train funding survived.
The $4.6 billion budget includes an allotment of $2.8 million for MARC train funding, something that wasn’t a sure bet earlier in the legislative session according to Del. Paul Espinosa (R-Jefferson, 66).
“The 2.8 million originally included in the budget, we were able to restore that, which I was pleased to co-sponsor,” Espinosa said.
Espinosa said state funding looked iffy until the governor’s revenue numbers were modified upward by as much as $20 million.
“That allowed us to essentially pay for the foster care reform out of that additional money and then we were able to restore some of the cuts including what was included for MARC Train so certainly good news for our commuters here in the Eastern Panhandle.”
Gov. Jim Justice had announced late last year an agreement with the State of Maryland to continue Maryland Area Regional Commuter (MARC) Train service to the Eastern Panhandle with a price tag of $3.4 million. Last year, local municipalities agreed to kick in some of the remaining cost.
Espinosa was a guest on Monday’s Panhandle Live, heard on MetroNews affiliates WEPM and WCST.