Brown says rail circuit would help business

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Brown says rail circuit would help business

Akron Beacon Journal – Improving Ohio's railroad infrastructure should help more than 200 of the state's manufacturers that have ties to the rail industry, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown and others argued Wednesday.

Brown and think tank Policy Matters Ohio identified 77 Northeast Ohio companies, including five in Summit, four in Portage and 11 in Stark counties, that they said could benefit if a federally funded $400 million project for passenger line service between Ohio's largest cities gets approved.

State Republicans have threatened to reject the project that would connect Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton and Cincinnati with passenger trains that go as fast as 79 mph in what is called the ''3C Corridor Passenger'' project.

The money would come out of federal stimulus funds in the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009. A state board earlier this year approved spending $25 million of the federal funds to pay for planning the improvements. But the rest of the funding has since been held up, with critics saying the trains would travel too slowly and that not enough people would use them.

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