AMTRAK MAY CUT WYO. SERVICE TO REDUCE SHORTFALL IN FUNDING

AMTRAK MAY CUT WYO. SERVICE TO REDUCE SHORTFALL IN FUNDING

Amtrak is looking at reducing its rail service in Wyoming to help cut a projected $30 million shortfall.

The proposed changes include cutting back service on the Pioneer, a daily Chicago-Denver-Seattle train. The train's Wyoming stops are Laramie, Cheyenne, Rawlins, Rock Springs and Evanston.Amtrak might reduce the Pioneer to three times a week before November if the agency's federal operating grant falls significantly below the $381 million authorized funding level, officials said.

The U.S. Senate has approved $351 million for Amtrak, while the House has approved $331 million. The final figure will be reached by a conference committee and approved by the full Congress.

Amtrak reinstated service to Wyoming in 1991 after pulling out in 1983 for the more scenic route from Denver to Salt Lake City.

Outraged by Amtrak's withdrawal from Wyoming, state officials asked the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn the decision.

Wyoming Congressman Craig Thomas said Amtrak returned to Wyoming because the route is faster. The agency previously said the flatter route through the state would cut hours off its Denver to Salt Lake City run and save about $2 million of its federal subsidy because of a lucrative mail delivery contract.