By Steve Tawa
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A bipartisan bill to rename Philadelphia’s 30th Street Station in honor of former US congressman Bill Gray has been approved in the House, and now moves to the US Senate for consideration.
US Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.), who succeeded Gray, introduced the measure to his colleagues, who passed the measure on a voice vote.
“We have the Betsy Ross Bridge, the Walt Whitman Bridge, the Ben Franklin Parkway,” Fattah notes, “but to add to this the Bill Gray Station at 30th Street appropriately recognizes his historical contributions.”
Fattah praised the late congressman, who passed away just over a year ago, as the first African-American to chair the House Budget Committee and the first to serve as majority whip, the third-ranking position in the House.
And Fattah says Gray fended off attempts in the 1980s to do away with subsidies for Amtrak.
“He helped to lead the budget negotiations with the Reagan administration, which had first sought to eliminate Amtrak,” Fattah recalls.
He says Gray was also responsible for securing federal funds to help renovate 30th Street Station.
Gray represented Philadelphia in Congress from 1978 to 1991.