Metro gets additional $120 million in COVID relief funds

Metro is getting $120 million in additional funding from the American Rescue Plan, Democratic senators from Virginia and Maryland said Thursday.

The financial infusion will support operations and help “in our continued preparation to keep the region moving as many reenter the workplace and resume leisure activities,” Metro General Manager and CEO Paul Weidefeld said in a statement.

Since the pandemic began, Metro has taken a big economic hit from declining ridership. The transit agency had applied for a grant under the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan passed last year. Those grants provide additional assistance to cover day-to-day operations, cleaning and sanitization, combating the spread of viruses and maintaining staffing levels.

“One year ago, we voted to pass a historic piece of legislation to help strengthen our nation amid a global health and economic crisis. As we work to overcome the most recent challenges presented by the omicron spike, we’re proud to see the American Rescue Plan continue to deliver needed support to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority,” said U.S. Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-Va.) and Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (both D-Md.) in a news release.

“This funding will help ensure that WMATA is able to meet the needs of its riders, including public servants, residents, and commuters in the DMV region,” they added.

Anna Gawel

Anna Gawel joined WTOP in 2020 and works in both the radio and digital departments. Anna Gawel has spent much of her career as the managing editor of The Washington Diplomat, which has been the flagship publication of D.C.’s diplomatic community for over 25 years.

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