CARES Act to come to the aid of Maine’s rail line to Boston

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Federal CARES Act money will pay for improvements to the passenger rail system that connects Maine to Boston. The $2.1 million is slated for the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, which operates the Downeaster. The Downeaster runs from Boston to Brunswick daily and is running at limited capacity due to the coronavirus pandemic. Republican Sen. Susan Collins, who is the chair of the transportation appropriations subcommittee, says the money will help the Downeaster make improvements that enhance safety, efficiency and reliability. Maine has had more than 4,900 cases of the virus since the beginning of the pandemic, which has disrupted numerous industries in the state.