Audit Reports

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2001 Assessment of Amtrak's Financial Performance and Requirements

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We released our fourth annual assessment of Amtrak’s financial status, a periodic review mandated by Congress in 1997 as part of the same law that requires Amtrak to become operationally self-sufficient by December 2, 2002. We found that:

  • Amtrak is no closer to operational self-sufficiency than it was in 1997.
  • There is insufficient time for Amtrak to become self-sufficient by the December 2, 2002 deadline.
  • Amtrak will likely need additional funding this year to continue operating.
  • Additional borrowing against assets—such as the 2001 mortgaging of Penn Station—would adversely affect the long-term prospects for the railroad.
  • Even if Amtrak becomes operationally self-sufficient this year, it will still need substantial Federal funds for capital improvements.
  • Deferral of routine maintenance is starting to catch up with Amtrak.