Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (10/23/1975)

(Measure passed House, amended, in lieu of H.R. 8672)

Emergency Rail Transportation Improvement and Employment Act - Declares it to be the purpose of this Act to authorize the Secretary of Transportation to provide financial assistance to eligible applicants for programs designed to reduce unemployment and to repair and improve essential railroad roadbeds and facilities.

Defines terms used in this Act, including "eligible applicant" to encompass any railroad providing intercity rail passenger service which is not in reorganization.

Directs the Secretary to make grants to eligible applicants for projects involving the repair, restoration, rehabilitation or improvement of roadbeds and facilities.

Directs the Secretary to promulgate guidelines and procedures with respect to grant applications. Sets forth items which must be included in each application.

Limits the use of grants made pursuant to this Act to the payment of wages and benefits earned by individuals employed in programs funded by this Act.

Requires that jobs created pursuant to this Act be made available first to furloughed railroad maintenance employees, then to persons who have exhausted their unemployment benefits, to unemployed persons who are not eligible for such benefits, and to other unemployed or underemployed persons.

States that roadbeds and facilities are eligible for project grants under this Act if: (1) they are designated for transfer to the Consolidated Rail Corporation in the final system plan under the Regional Rail Reorganization Act; (2) they are utilized by the National Railroad Passenger Corporation; (3) they are owned by a railroad in reorganization under the Bankruptcy Act; or (4) are utilized for providing intercity rail passenger service by any railroad not in reorganization.

Sets forth as the goals toward which each project receiving financial assistance under this Act must be structured: (1) the reduction of unemployment; (2) the acceleration and expansion of a national rail rehabilitation effort; (3) the coordination of repair and rehabilitation work with other rail transportation priorities, such as the improvement of intercity rail passenger service; (4) the substantial completion of each such project within 18 months; and (5) the maximization of chances for permanent employment of individuals employed under such projects.

Requires that wages paid to workers in projects undertaken with financial assistance pursuant to the terms of this Act be not less than those prevailing for similar work in the same locality.

Provides that the aggregate amount of financial assistance provided under this Act with respect to any project to repair, restore, rehabilitate, or improve roadbeds and facilities shall be amortized over the five-year period beginning on the date of completion of such project.

Authorizes the appropriation of $240,000,000 for providing financial assistance under this Act.