Amtrak

Amtrak’s Hoosier State Line made one final round trip between Indianapolis and Chicago Sunday before discontinuing service. For some on board, it was an emotional day.

Post-Tribune

Today:   On this "Reporters' Roundtable" Thursday, we talk to Meredith Colias-Pete and Carole Carlson of the "Post-Tribune" and Joseph Pete of the "Times" about the stories they put in print editions and posted online.  They include education news from Crown Point, from Gary and an education-related story from the courts as well as updates on the costs of child care, economic development in Gary's Miller neighborhood -- a business and environment story -- and the latest on the impending arrival of another pizza joint in northwest Indiana. 

Amtrak halts post-July reservations for imperiled line

Apr 10, 2019
Amtrak

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — Amtrak has stopped taking reservations beyond July 1 for an Indianapolis-to-Chicago passenger line that could soon lose funding from the state of Indiana.

Indiana has contributed $3 million annually for Amtrak's Hoosier State line, a 196-mile (315-kilometer) route that runs between the cities four days a week.

But Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb didn't include that funding in his proposed 2-year state budget that starts July 1.

Holcomb's Budget Proposal Could Derail Hoosier State Line

Jan 10, 2019
Passengers board the Hoosier State train Friday Aug. 19, 2016. (FILE PHOTO: Chris Morisse Vizza/WBAA)
Samantha Horton

Gov. Eric Holcomb’s proposed budget eliminates the state’s annual subsidy to fund the Hoosier State Amtrak train. The announcement came as a surprise to local officials whose cities are served by the line.

Amtrak

Today:    Steve Coxhead of the Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance joins us to give an update on how passenger rail service is doing across the Region and the state -- a preview of the organization's short-term strategic plan -- and some concerns about the business model that Amtrak's new president is endorsing.  And Griffith Town Council president Rick Ryfa talks about Tuesday's special election in his community that will determine whether residents want to remain in Calumet Township -- or choose a different township.

Amtrak

Today:  Steve Coxhead, the president of the Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance, joins us to talk about concerns about late trains on Amtrak's "Hoosier State passenger service between Indianapolis and Chicago.  The national rail provider says only one in three Indianapolis-bound trains arrived on-time in June, a change from past months  Coxhead says there are problems on CSX, the freight line that provides the rails for both the "Hoosier State" and the Indiana "Cardinal" passenger routes. 

Indiana House Republicans

Today:   A conversation with State Representative Hal Slager (R-Schererville) about the just-completed 2017 General Assembly session and the big issues that lawmakers addressed.  He also talks about the bills he introduced and supported that affect northwest Indiana residents and businesses -- including road and bridge improvements, and his bill that sets up the mechanism to support the South Shore Line's "double tracking" between Gary and Michigan City and the proposed "West Lake Corridor" project.  

75d56d26-8ae4-4178-a21a-a713f5194a22
Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

Indiana Department of Transportation officials say an unreasonable request led to Iowa Pacific Holdings removing itself from a deal to run the Hoosier State passenger train.

But Iowa Pacific’s CEO says a quirk in the contracts between his company, INDOT and Amtrak doomed the partnership.

Ed Ellis says his firm’s compensation from the deal decreased each time on-time performance improved.

“The way the contracts worked, we ended up getting less money as the train ran more on time,” Ellis says.

Trains Magazine

Riders getting on board Amtrak's Hoosier State Line passenger service between Chicago and Indianapolis beginning March 1st will notice that they're sitting in  Amtrak cars.  Iowa Pacific, the company contracted by the Indiana Department of Transportation last year to provide the equipment, is ending its agreement effective February 28th.  Amtrak will resume complete control of the service on March 1st.

WBAA Public Radio

Today:  Tom Pappas and Dave Clark from the city of Portage's veterans committee are in the studio to talk about tomorrow evening's monthly committee meeting with special guest Lynette Taylor.  She will explain the new "My VA" program and how it is designed to rebuild trust in the VA, improve service and quality of care for northwest Indiana veterans.

Post-Tribune reporter Meredith Colias talks about how a Portage man turned the discovery of a World War II veteran's dog tags found in his late uncle's belongings into a search for the family of the man who owned the dog tags.