Among the most neglected, yet urgent problems facing us today is our crumbling national infrastructure, including our highways, bridges, mass transit, aviation, maritime and railroads. In particular, the federal government has not done enough in recent years to improve the access Americans have to reliable, energy efficient sources of public transportation. Progress in this sector in long overdue. We must invest in environmentally sustainable public transportation for the wellbeing of future generations. Improvements to our transportation system should be engineered with state-of-the-art clean energy technology to mitigate our global climate crisis. A revamped transportation system will also be critical in fostering economic growth by ensuring access to high paying jobs, allowing everyday people to get ahead.
It is imperative that we expand transit services to parts of our district that are underserved, particularly the Co-Op City section of the Bronx.  As District 16’s representative, I pushed hard for an agreement between Amtrak and the MTA to establish Metro North service through our district to Penn Station by using existing track owned by Amtrak. The plan will create four new stations in the Bronx, including one in Co-Op City, connecting residents to the rest of the city and Westchester. I have long advocated for this project on behalf of Co-Op City and other sections of the East Bronx to end their isolation as a transportation desert. This plan will also connect existing New Haven Line stations (New Rochelle, Larchmont, Mamaroneck, and Rye in our district) to the west side of Manhattan. The project will deliver visible economic benefits in both the Bronx and Westchester through improved travel options, allowing workers to access desirable jobs in areas that had been difficult to reach. I was thrilled to join both my federal and local colleagues to support this innovative plan. To secure a better future for generations to come, we must lay out a proper groundwork for efficient and accessible transportation.
In February 2019, I joined sixty-seven Democratic colleagues to introduce the Green New Deal resolution, which contains many initiatives that I have championed over the years. One of the Green New Deal’s central tenets is to overhaul transportation systems in the United States by investing in zero-emission vehicle infrastructure and manufacturing, clean and affordable and accessible public transit, and high-speed rail. 
Throughout my time in Congress, I have successfully secured federal funding to improve our transportation systems. For example, in 2018, I worked with the other members of the Westchester congressional delegation – Nita Lowey (NY-17) and Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18) – and County Executive George Latimer to secure a $3.6 million grant from the United States Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration. The grant is being used repair and replace Westchester County’s aging bus fleet with more reliable and efficient vehicles. Thousands of residents each day rely on Westchester’s Bee Line Bus system, and I will continue to advocate for much needed federal funding to enhance this service.
It is also critical that our public transportation systems are safe. The NTSB has issued a number of safety recommendations -- such as screening engineers for sleep disorders and implementation of an automatic braking system – which should be instituted without delay. In 2008, the U.S. Congress passed legislation requiring installation of positive train control (PTC), which I supported and voted to enact. More than a decade has gone by since we passed that legislation, and still railways in the busy Northeast Corridor are without this vital, lifesaving technology. According to the Federal Railroad Administration, PTC technology is “capable of reliably and functionally preventing train-to-train collisions, over speed derailments, incursions into established work zone limits, and the movement of a train through a main line switch in the wrong position.” As the tragic incidents of train derailments continue to occur across the country – including the horrific incidents in Spuyten Duyvil in 2013 and Rye in 2017 – it is obvious that more could and should be done to improve rail safety. We need to upgrade our rail lines and retrofit all our trains with PTC technology, and we need to do it immediately.  As your congressman, I will continue to hold the MTA accountable and work to make sure that every New Yorker has access to safe and speedy transportation options.
While we must also continue investing in our infrastructure to maintain safe, efficient roadways, tunnels and bridges, we must do it in a more thoughtful way. I steadfastly opposed the plan to build a tunnel connecting Westchester and Long Island because it would increase traffic and damage the integrity of the Sound Shore community and the surrounding ecosystem. It was gratifying to see this project dropped by New York State.
I will continue working to achieve transportation and infrastructure solutions that are environmentally friendly and help our communities thrive.