ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — Maryland and Virginia’s governors, along with Washington, D.C.’s mayor urged the incoming Biden-Harris administration to make the federal government a fourth partner in WMATA funding.

“We strongly believe that maintaining a safe and reliable public transit system for the nation’s capital is a national priority and should be treated in that way,” the leaders wrote in a letter. “WMATA serves as a linchpin to federal government operations, yet the lack of a federal contribution for operating WMATA fails to reflect this fact…We encourage the Biden-Harris administration to renew the federal government’s commitment to Metro’s future and strongly consider joining the three jurisdictions as our fourth partner in funding WMATA’s operations.”

The three leaders said without more support, WMATA faces “major budget shortfalls” which could force layoffs and more service interruptions.

They said when pandemic relief funding runs out, WMATA will be forced to make “draconian service cuts” and eliminate more than 3,800 jobs- a third of its workforce, they claimed.

They copied the letter to Transportation Secretary-designate Pete Buttigieg and other members of the Biden-Harris transition team.

CBS Baltimore Staff