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Amtrak National Network Campaign 2018, Commentary, The Steel Wheels Column

Amtrak debt free says Anderson – Amtrak FY17 audited balance sheet says otherwise

At the now notorious Los Angeles Rail Summit in April one of Anderson’s most extraordinary comment was that Amtrak is, or shortly will be, “debt-free”.
The FY’17 audited balance sheet, thoughtfully posted on their website, reports current liabilities of $1.6 billion, of which $136 million is the current maturities of long term debt and capital leases, and the rest is other current debt, plus $1.053 billion in various long term debt and capital lease obligations.
Amtrak’s total direct indebtedness thus is around $2.7 billion, plus whatever is secured by the rarely-mentioned mortgage of the NEC to the United States. Plus, of course, the $25 billion (or whatever it is now) in the “State Of Good Repair deficit” in the NEC.
Plus its “other liabilities” on the balance sheet that add up to another $3.2 billion.
Plus $10.9 billion in preferred stock held by the government.
Now Anderson was not appointed to his position because of his abilities as an accountant, but there can be no excuse for the statement that he made.
Thanks to Andy Selden of MinnARP for digging up the facts.