Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance

Could The Hoosier State Line Come Back?

Jun 28, 2019
Seth Tackett / WFIU/WTIU News

 

The Hoosier State Line will make its final trip from Indianapolis to Chicago on Sunday.

It's ending after Governor Eric Holcomb eliminated $3 million in annual funding for the route from the two-year state budget that starts July 1.

Hoosiers will still be able to catch a train to Chicago on the Cardinal Line, but that route starts in New York and only runs three days a week. 

The Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance urged lawmakers at the Statehouse Wednesday to continue funding a four day-a-week passenger train from Indianapolis to Chicago.

The Hoosier State Amtrak line has received $3 million in state funding each year. This funding was removed from this year’s state budget.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA

In the crossroads of America, it's pretty easy to get around by driving or flying. But if you want to take the train, your options are limited.

Now, public-private deals such as the Hoosier State train are trying to change that.

Proponents of more rail service hope the Indianapolis-to-Chicago line so far will help prove their point to lawmakers.

On a Friday morning, the Hoosier State train is snaking north between Dyer and the Illinois state line. About 90 passengers sleep in their seats, eat breakfast in the dining car or use free WiFi.

Dave Dugdale / https://www.flickr.com/photos/davedugdale/

Indiana’s 2015 tax amnesty program surpassed its goal of collecting at least $90 million. 

That ensures funding for key state programs, including the Hoosier State passenger train that runs between Indianapolis and Chicago and stops in Lafayette. 

The two-month tax amnesty program generated $100 million from Hoosiers who owed back taxes and repaid them without penalties, interest or fines.  

Delinquent taxpayers have promised an additional $22 million through payment plans that run through June 2016. 

INDOT To Cancel Hoosier State Line April 1st

Mar 9, 2015
Stan Jastrzebski/WBAA News

5 p.m. MONDAY UPDATE:  

The president of the Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance is disappointed by INDOT‘s decision to end Amtrak’s "Hoosier State" rail service on April first.

But Steve Coxhead thinks the federal ruling on rail service shorter than 750 miles was rushed into effect because Indiana was negotiating with a private company.