True to his word, 16th Congressional District United States Representative Don Manzullo is doing his best to assure that Amtrak will pick up passengers in McHenry County.
So far, he has gotten the Rockford Metropolitan Agency for Planning and the Belvidere City Council to pass resolutions in support of a McHenry County stop.
The Republican’s press release follows:
Manzullo Rallies Regional Support
for McHenry County Amtrak Stop
[CRYSTAL LAKE] Congressman Don Manzullo (R-IL) is rallying support from communities west of McHenry County in his mission to secure an Amtrak stop in Huntley or Marengo.
At Manzullo’s request, the Rockford Metropolitan Agency for Planning (RMAP) and the Belvidere City Council passed resolutions of support in the past week for a McHenry County stop along the Amtrak line that will proceed from Chicago to Elgin and through McHenry County with stops in Belvidere, Rockford, Freeport and Galena on the way to Dubuque, Iowa. RMAP board members include the Mayors of Rockford, Belvidere, Loves Park and Machesney Park as well as the county board chairs in Winnebago and Boone counties. Copies of the resolutions are attached.
“The mayors and county board chairmen in Boone and Winnebago counties understand that a McHenry County stop will be a boon for our overall passenger rail efforts in northern Illinois, and I thank them for their support,” Manzullo said.
“A McHenry County stop will help increase ridership and make the Chicago to Dubuque route more viable in the long run. It will also expedite the eventual extension of Milwaukee District/West Metra commuter rail service from Big Timber to Huntley and Marengo and beyond to Belvidere and Rockford since they will traverse the same tracks.
“A McHenry County stop is a win-win for all the communities along the Amtrak route and I urge Governor Quinn to designate a stop in McHenry County, the only county between Elgin and Dubuque currently without a stop.”
Manzullo, who has worked closely with U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) to return Amtrak and commuter rail to northern Illinois, sent a letter to Governor Pat Quinn last month requesting a McHenry County stop as part of the state’s decision to start a Chicago to Dubuque Amtrak line beginning in 2012.
The $60 million in funds necessary to upgrade the tracks for the Chicago to Iowa Amtrak route were included in the state capital bill, and construction is expected to take 18 months with service scheduled to begin in 2012. Gov. Quinn announced earlier this month Amtrak would follow the northern route that runs through Huntley and Marengo in McHenry County. The mayors of both communities have expressed interest in a stop.