The state of Illinois and the Federal Rail Administration have agreed to extend funding for the passenger rail project linking the Quad Cities to Chicago.
The federal government committed to making a $177 million investment in the transportation project, and the funds were slated to expire at the end of June.
U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL,17), who has been pressing the Rauner administration to move forward with the project, announced Thursday that the state and federal government have reached an extension agreement. The agreement, which is now official, runs through September 2017, the congresswoman said.
"Making investments in our infrastructure creates good-paying jobs and spurs new economic development opportunities, so I am proud that we stopped the state from leaving $177 million in federal funding on the table," Bustos said in a statement. "I am very pleased that the Illinois Department of Transportation and Federal Rail Administration have agreed to an extension through September 30, 2017, but we still have a lot of work to do to ensure this project gets completed. During these tough economic times, we simply can't afford to turn down any opportunities to create jobs and get Illinois back on the right track."