West Virginia officials raise concern over potential cuts to Marc Service in Eastern Panhandle


Public hearing held in September

Martinsburg, W.Va. (WDVM)–

In the Eastern Panhandle roughly 250 people ride the Marc Train to Washington D.C and Northern Virginia every week. Riders can get on at stations in Harpers ferry, Martinsburg and Duffield. But, that could soon change.

“Over the last several years we have been working very hard to try to allocate funding in order to preserve the service in the Eastern Panhandle,” said Del. Paul Espinosa.

The Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration (MDOT MTA) has asked the West Virginia legislature for just over 3 million dollars in funding for 20-19/20-20 fiscal year. While the legislature was only able to provide just over $1 million dollars in funding. As a result, MTA has proposed to eliminate four of the six trains that go into the Eastern Panhandle.

“How do you justify a considerable subsidy $3.2 million dollars the {Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration} was requesting for an estimated 250 riders,” said De. Espinosa.

Brittany Marshall, a spokesperson for Maryland Department of Transportation Maryland Transit Administration, sent WDVM a statement saying:

“In recent months officials from Maryland and West Virginia engaged in discussion regarding levels of MARC Train service, including retention of existing service, which would require an allocation of about $3.5 million from West Virginia, and a less frequent level of service, at $1.1 million. For Fiscal Year 2020, the West Virginia legislature chose to appropriate $1.1 million to support MARC Train service, which will provide two MARC Train trains per day on the Brunswick line into West Virginia. MDOT MTA will conduct a public hearing on the proposed service level adjustments on September 7, 2019 to gather public feedback.”

Elaine Mauck, a Berkeley County council member, says she is not happy with the potential cuts to the marc service.

“We’re going to be losing a lot of people and income to the state of West Virginia, and it’s there loss, the West Virginia legislature, because they didn’t think it should be funded,” said Mauck

Marshall added that she doesn’t believe service in Maryland should be affected. There will be a public hearing held on September 7th.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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