US Senate committee approves Honolulu rail funds


HONOLULU — The U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations has passed a bill that includes $250 million in funding for Honolulu rail.

The bill was passed by the committee Thursday.

It includes more than $2 billion in grants to help communities around the nation invest in new rail and bus rapid transit systems.

U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz says Honolulu made an important decision to build rail transit and it is the federal government’s responsibility to support it.

The bill also approves a program that sends $9 million to Hawaii every year to improve the quality of the state’s public housing.

It also provides $10 million for a program that supports the State Department of Hawaiian Home Lands. That money helps the state construct new homes and provide support services to low-income Native Hawaiians.