Zemke Amendment Paves Way for Ann Arbor-Detroit Rail

Bipartisan bill makes it easier for transit board to create regional line
Monday, June 9, 2014

LANSING — State Representative Adam F. Zemke (D-Ann Arbor) offered and received an amendment to House Bill 5168 that was subsequently passed by the House in a bipartisan vote of 82-26 yesterday. HB 5186 amends the Regional Transit Authority (RTA) to include the proposed M-1 rail line in Detroit and adds the ability to create new commuter rail lines. Zemke’s amendment specifically facilitates the creation of such a line between Ann Arbor and Detroit.

“I want to thank Speaker Pro Tem John Walsh (R-Livonia), who sponsored HB 5168, for working with me on this amendment,” Zemke said. “I’m proud that my colleagues recognized the great potential for this project, and I look forward to seeing the Senate pass the bill as well.”

HB 5168 allows the RTA to have management authority over the proposed M-1 rail project in Metro Detroit. Zemke’s amendment allows the RTA to similarly manage an Ann Arbor-to-Detroit railway if seven of the nine board members approve, rather than requiring a unanimous vote.

“This rail project would bring a surge of new economic activity to Ann Arbor, Detroit and all of the communities in between,” Zemke said. “I will continue to do everything I can to make this proposal a reality.”