BART decision a major disappointment: Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) Statement
BART Makes the Wrong Decision.
Recently, the San Francisco Bay Area's BART transit system had been deciding on a roughly $3 billion contract to purchase new subway cars to replace its aging fleet. BART officials had been weighing bids from two finalists, Montreal-based Bombardier, and the French company Alstom.
Bombardier had offered a lower bid, but one that only met the minimum Buy America threshold of 60% U.S.-made content. Alstom, however, had pledged at least 95% American-made content in the cars they would deliver.
Although the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) had strongly urged BART officials to go with the most "Made in America" option, today the BART board made the wrong call. In a 9-0 decision, it chose the Bombardier bid.
AAM Executive Director Scott Paul expressed the disappointment of many advocates of U.S. manufacturing:
“The fact that BART elected to go with a new rail car that includes a substantial amount of outsourced parts and production shows just how weak our Buy America laws are. We’re very disappointed.
"I hope BART doesn’t share the city of Chicago's experience, where Bombardier was cited by federal authorities for faulty Chinese parts in its CTA passenger rail cars. In contrast, I commend local authorities like the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District who have done the right thing by insourcing more production."