TCMC Funding Battle Continues

June 28, 2019 — Regardless of what you’ve heard about the Wisconsin budget status, we all need to keep telling everyone about the benefits of the TCMC train.

Hopefully you know what the TCMC train is:  A second daily passenger train between the Twin Cities (St. Paul, MN.) – Milwaukee & Chicago.  This train will travel on the Empire Builder route through central and western Wisconsin, in addition to stops at Milwaukee, Sturtevant and the Mitchell Airport Station.

As I type the TCMC train is not completely shut out of the 2019-2021 Biennial Budget process, but the road to success is long and hard now.

In the meantime, your voice expressed to your elected representatives in Madison is still very important, regardless of the outcome of the 2019-2021 budget.  If you don’t know how to contact your representatives over this topic, two documents are attached to this post to help you out.

WisARP sample legis letter verA2             WisARP sample legis letter verB2

These two documents are sample letters you can use contacting your Senators and Assembly Representatives.  They are very similar, but the letter information is presented in a different order.  Choose the one that represents your feelings best.  Absolutely no problem if you decide to tweak the letter or add your own personal experience to make it stronger.  The letter also contains the website URL for finding out who your representatives are and how you can contact them.

WisARP would like to thank you in advance for taking the time to contact your Madison lawmakers.  Even if you do not live along the Empire Builder route of the TCMC train, your input is still very important.  Do not discount the value of your contribution at this time.

I would like to thank Mark Weitenbeck for his invaluable contributions to this post and sample letters.  Please contact me at < > if you have any questions.




The following text is from the May 15, 2019 TCMC Newsletter by Terry Brown, WisARP Vice-President of Communications.

For those in attendance at the February Town Hall Meetings, or if you caught the video at the WisARP YouTube Channel, you heard about the State of Illinois adding a regional train between Chicago and Carbondale called the Saluki.  Digging into numbers and facts has generated an interesting review.

First, this cannot be an apples-to-apples comparison.  When the Saluki was inaugurated in October 2006, there were already two trains running between Carbondale and Chicago.  There currently is just one train running between the Twin Cities and Chicago.   Upon looking at the numbers you will find evidence to back up what was said about escalating ridership, and you’ll better understand how the 2015 Amtrak report on the second train proposal predicted higher ridership than the first train.

WisARP site TCMC TRAIN Carbondale projections June 27

The rest of the story is available on the PDF file download, including the chart with numbers of the Saluki train.  WisARP continues to encourage members to contact their legislators in Madison to approve funding for the TCMC train, regardless of the budget process at the time you read this story.

Contact Terry Brown at with additional questions or copies of the TCMC Newsletters.