Updated 7:25 a.m. Wednesday
A House appropriations bill proposed this week as part of a package to fund federal government operations through the end of September contains what could be a welcome surprise for Caltrain.
Legislation from the House appropriations subcommittee on transportation includes $100 million for the Peninsula commuter railroad's planned electrification of its route from San Jose to San Francisco.
It's far from certain, however, that Caltrain will get to spend the money. Congress has yet to vote on the bill including the electrification funding -- a project that has faced unanimous opposition from the 14 Republicans in California's House delegation. And even if Congress approves the legislation and it's signed into law, the transit agency will receive the funds only if the Trump administration signs off on a $647 million grant agreement that's been on hold since February.
"It's not a done deal, but it's good progress," said Caltrain spokeswoman Tasha Bartholomew. She added: "We still have a long way to go."