INDIANAPOLIS | The future of the South Shore Line and its governing board would be the topic of a General Assembly study this summer under legislation approved Tuesday by the Indiana House.
House Bill 1450, which now goes to the Senate, requires the state's transportation study committee to review the membership and funding of the Northern Indiana Commuter Transit District.
State Rep. Mara Candelaria Reardon, D-Munster, the sponsor of the proposal, said she believes Lake County is underrepresented on the NICTD board, which currently includes two representatives each from Lake, Porter, LaPorte and St. Joseph counties and three members appointed by the governor.
"When you look at the amount of investment in equipment, employee office space, everything, it's all located in the eastern part of the district, as opposed to the western part of the district where we actually have 80 percent of the ridership," Candelaria Reardon said.
Candelaria Reardon is concerned the eastern members are preventing the board from moving forward on a South Shore extension to Munster, Dyer and Lowell.
"I think we've got a lot of people protecting their areas instead of seeing the big picture," she said. "We've got Illinois breathing down our necks trying to get that southern leg of their Metra train running."
The legislation was approved 87-3.