Kings County, California
Kings County is a county in the U. S. state of California. The population was 152,982 at the 2010 census; the California Department of Finance estimated the county's population was 151,662 as of January 1, 2018. The county seat is Hanford. Kings County comprises the Hanford-Corcoran, CA metropolitan statistical area, included in the Visalia-Porterville-Hanford, CA combined statistical area, it is in a rich agricultural region. The area was inhabited for thousands of years by American Indians including the Tachi Yokuts tribe, it was colonized by Spain and the United States. An 1805 expedition led by Spanish Army Lieutenant Gabriel Moraga recorded discovering the river, which they named El Rio de los Santos Reyes after the Three Wise Men of the Bible. At the time of the United States conquest of California in 1848, the new government changed the name to Kings River after which the county was named. In 1880, a dispute over land titles between settlers and the Southern Pacific Railroad resulted in a bloody gun battle on a farm 5.6 mi northwest of Hanford.
This event became known as the Mussel Slough Tragedy. Kings County was formed in 1893 from the western part of Tulare County. In 1909, by an act of the state legislature, 208 square miles of Fresno County territory was added to the northwest portion of Kings County. Settlers reclaimed its wetlands for agricultural development. In surface area, it was the largest body of freshwater west of the Great Lakes, supported a large population of migratory birds as well as local birds and wildlife. Monoculture has reduced habitat for many species. In 1928, oil was discovered in the Kettleman Hills located in the southwestern part of Kings County; the Kettleman North Dome Oil Field became one of the most productive oil fields in the United States. In 1933 during the Great Depression, over 18,000 cotton pickers in the southern San Joaquin Valley migrant Mexican workers, went on strike. During the strike, 3,500 striking farm workers lived in a four-acre camp on the land of a small farmer on the outskirts of Corcoran.
The federal government intervened to force both sides to negotiate a settlement. Lemoore Army Airfield was established for training and defense during World War II. In 1961, the U. S. Navy opened NAS Lemoore 9 miles west of Lemoore, not far from the earlier site; the completion of the California Aqueduct in the early 1970s brought needed water for agriculture and domestic use to the west side of the county. Kingston Mussel Slough Tragedy El Adobe de los Robles Rancho built by Daniel Rhoads Vaca Adobe Cox & Clark Trading Post and Steamboat Landing Witt Site According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,392 square miles, of which 1,389 square miles is land and 2.1 square miles is water. Kings County is bordered on the north and northwest by Fresno County, on the east by Tulare County, on the south by Kern County and a small part of San Luis Obispo County and on the west by Monterey County. Most of the historic Tulare Lake was within Kings County. Although reclaimed for farming late in the 19th century, it was the largest freshwater lake west of the Great Lakes.
The 2010 United States Census reported that Kings County had a population of 152,982. The census included inmates of the three men's state prisons. According to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, there were 18,640 inmates in Kings County prisons on March 31, 2010, 12.2% of the population. The inmate population had been reduced to 13,894 on December 31, 2013; the racial makeup of Kings County was 83,027 White, 11,014 African American, 2,562 Native American, 5,620 Asian, 271 Pacific Islander, 42,996 from other races, 7,492 from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 77,866 persons; the U. S. Census does not identify. However, the Public Policy Institute of California issued a report in July 2011, which estimated there were 9,000 illegal immigrants living in Kings County in 2008, which would be 5.8% of the county’s population. According to the California Board of State and Community Corrections, Kings County had the highest incarceration rate of California's 58 counties in 2014 at 1,384 per 100,000 population.
Statewide, the rate was 567 per 100,000. As of the 2000 census, there were 129,461 people, 34,418 households, 26,983 families residing in the county. However, the California Department of Finance estimates that the population had grown 154,434 as of January 1, 2008; the population density based on the 2000 census was 36/km². There were 36,563 housing units at an average density of 26 per square mile; the racial makeup of the county was 53.7% White, 8.3% Black or African American, 1.7% Native American, 3.1% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 28.3% from other races, 4.8% from two or more races. 43.6% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 7.1% were of Portuguese, 6.2% German, 5.3% Irish and 5.1% American ancestry according to Census 2000. 63.6% spoke English, 30.9% Spanish, 1.4% Tagalog, 1.4% Portuguese and 1.3% Samoan as their first language. There were 34,418 households out of which 46.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.0% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 21.6% were non-families.
17.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.8% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.18 and the average family size was 3.56. In the county, the population was spread out with 29.0% under the age of 18, 11.8% f
2010 United States Census
The 2010 United States Census is the twenty-third and most recent United States national census. National Census Day, the reference day used for the census, was April 1, 2010; the census was taken via mail-in citizen self-reporting, with enumerators serving to spot-check randomly selected neighborhoods and communities. As part of a drive to increase the count's accuracy, 635,000 temporary enumerators were hired; the population of the United States was counted as 308,745,538, a 9.7% increase from the 2000 Census. This was the first census in which all states recorded a population of over half a million, as well as the first in which all 100 largest cities recorded populations of over 200,000; as required by the United States Constitution, the U. S. census has been conducted every 10 years since 1790. The 2000 U. S. Census was the previous census completed. Participation in the U. S. Census is required by law in Title 13 of the United States Code. On January 25, 2010, Census Bureau Director Robert Groves inaugurated the 2010 Census enumeration by counting World War II veteran Clifton Jackson, a resident of Noorvik, Alaska.
More than 120 million census forms were delivered by the U. S. Post Office beginning March 15, 2010; the number of forms mailed out or hand-delivered by the Census Bureau was 134 million on April 1, 2010. Although the questionnaire used April 1, 2010 as the reference date as to where a person was living, an insert dated March 15, 2010 included the following printed in bold type: "Please complete and mail back the enclosed census form today." The 2010 Census national mail participation rate was 74%. From April through July 2010, census takers visited households that did not return a form, an operation called "non-response follow-up". In December 2010, the U. S. Census Bureau delivered population information to the U. S. President for apportionment, in March 2011, complete redistricting data was delivered to states. Identifiable information will be available in 2082; the Census Bureau did not use a long form for the 2010 Census. In several previous censuses, one in six households received this long form, which asked for detailed social and economic information.
The 2010 Census used only a short form asking ten basic questions: How many people were living or staying in this house, apartment, or mobile home on April 1, 2010? Were there any additional people staying here on April 1, 2010 that you did not include in Question 1? Mark all that apply: Is this house, apartment, or mobile home – What is your telephone number? What is Person 1's name? What is Person 1's sex? What is Person 1's age and Person 1's date of birth? Is Person 1 of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin? What is Person 1's race? Does Person 1 sometimes live or stay somewhere else? The form included space to repeat all of these questions for up to twelve residents total. In contrast to the 2000 census, an Internet response option was not offered, nor was the form available for download. Detailed socioeconomic information collected during past censuses will continue to be collected through the American Community Survey; the survey provides data about communities in the United States on a 1-year or 3-year cycle, depending on the size of the community, rather than once every 10 years.
A small percentage of the population on a rotating basis will receive the survey each year, no household will receive it more than once every five years. In June 2009, the U. S. Census Bureau announced. However, the final form did not contain a separate "same-sex married couple" option; when noting the relationship between household members, same-sex couples who are married could mark their spouses as being "Husband or wife", the same response given by opposite-sex married couples. An "unmarried partner" option was available for couples; the 2010 census cost $13 billion $42 per capita. Operational costs were $5.4 billion under the $7 billion budget. In December 2010 the Government Accountability Office noted that the cost of conducting the census has doubled each decade since 1970. In a detailed 2004 report to Congress, the GAO called on the Census Bureau to address cost and design issues, at that time, had estimated the 2010 Census cost to be $11 billion. In August 2010, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced that the census operational costs came in under budget.
Locke credited the management practices of Census Bureau director Robert Groves, citing in particular the decision to buy additional advertising in locations where responses lagged, which improved the overall response rate. The agency has begun to rely more on questioning neighbors or other reliable third parties when a person could not be reached at home, which reduced the cost of follow-up visits. Census data for about 22% of U. S. househol
Per capita income
Per capita income or average income measures the average income earned per person in a given area in a specified year. It is calculated by dividing the area's total income by its total population. Per capita income is national income divided by population size. Per capita income is used to measure an area's average income and compare the wealth of different populations. Per capita income is used to measure a country's standard of living, it is expressed in terms of a used international currency such as the euro or United States dollar, is useful because it is known, is calculable from available gross domestic product and population estimates, produces a useful statistic for comparison of wealth between sovereign territories. This helps to ascertain a country's development status, it is one of the three measures for calculating the Human Development Index of a country. In the United States, it is defined by the U. S. Census Bureau as the following: "Per capita income is the mean money income received in the past 12 months computed for every man and child in a geographic area."
Critics claim that per capita income has several weaknesses in measuring prosperity: Comparisons of per capita income over time need to consider inflation. Without adjusting for inflation, figures tend to overstate the effects of economic growth. International comparisons can be distorted by cost of living differences not reflected in exchange rates. Where the objective is to compare living standards between countries, adjusting for differences in purchasing power parity will more reflect what people are able to buy with their money, it does not reflect income distribution. If a country's income distribution is skewed, a small wealthy class can increase per capita income while the majority of the population has no change in income. In this respect, median income is more useful when measuring of prosperity than per capita income, as it is less influenced by outliers. Non-monetary activity, such as barter or services provided within the family, is not counted; the importance of these services varies among economies.
Per capita income does not consider whether income is invested in factors to improve the area's development, such as health, education, or infrastructure. List of countries by average wage List of countries by GDP per capita—GDP at market or government official exchange rates per inhabitant List of countries by GDP per capita—GDP calculated at purchasing power parity exchange per inhabitant List of countries by GNI per capita List of countries by GNI per capita List of countries by income equality Total personal income
Lemoore is a city in Kings County, United States. Lemoore is located 7.5 miles west-southwest of Hanford, at an elevation of 230 feet. It is part of the Hanford-Corcoran Metropolitan Statistical Area; the population was 24,531 at the 2010 Census. The California Department of Finance estimated that Lemoore's population was 25,892 on January 1, 2018. Lemoore is located at 36°18′03″N 119°46′58″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.5 square miles, all of it land. The maps published by Thos. H. Thompson in 1892, shows three high water levels of the giant Tulare Lake in different years; the highest lake level, the one Thompson labeled "original lake line" skirts or touches the 1892 town of Lemoore's south-west corner at the current intersection of State Route 41 and State Route 198. On Thompson's map, Lemoore is on the east bank, about five miles away Lemoore Naval Air Station would have been on the west bank of the pointy northern tip of Tulare Lake at its maximum size.
At the extreme northern point of Tulare Lake was its natural, occasional "flood year" spillway northbound into Bogg Slough, Fresno Slough, the San Joaquin River's watershed, onward to the sea at San Francisco Bay. The present remaining marshy remnants of Bogg Slough, with its unfarmed oxbow structures may be the last of their kind to avoid the plow in the Kings-San Joaquin river system; this "summit," or spillway is located just a few miles north-west of Lemoore, off Grangeville Blvd at elevation 210 feet. The spillway was wide and confusing, choked with tall tule rushes, without observable landmarks. Only one commercial boat is known to have sailed from Tulare Lake to the San Francisco delta. Tulare Lake had huge economic importance in the region, both for the large population of Indians, the white pioneers; the lake supported a large commercial fishery feeding San Francisco, a steam powered ferry servicing several towns and settlements. The receding lake continually opened up new agricultural lands for settlement.
Because of its source streams being diverted, the last time the lake overflowed was 1878, today it no longer exists. Because the natural summit or border between the Kings River basin and the San Joaquin River's watershed, the Kings River itself nearly intersect near Lemoore, a number of huge water works that control regional water flow are located nearby. For example, in flood years the Kings River is diverted west into the so-called "North Fork Kings River," to Crescent Weir and related major levees eastward to the north-flowing Fresno Slough and to the sea, preventing a resurgence of Tulare Lake to the south; this "switch point" is located just north of Lemoore right off of Highway 41 and Elgin Ave at the New Island Weirs. In many cases the prehistoric Kings River bed has been obliterated and new channels have been constructed. However, as of 2014, in satellite images the remains of many of the old channels can still be detected. Other towns built just above the Tulare Lake high-water shoreline include Kettleman City and Alpaugh.
Satellite maps indicate that highways and property lines are aligned with the historic lake shores. Many of the farms can be seen to be much larger within its various historic shore lines than in the surrounding areas; the city had a local paper called The Lemoore Advance and the Advance Extra, now defunct. KGAR, 93.3 FM, is a low-power FM radio station operated by Lemoore High School students on the campus of Lemoore High School. Dr. Lovern Lee Moore from France first made his home in what was western Tulare County, California—now the City of Lemoore—in April, 1871, it was on the northern shoreline of Tulare Lake potentially the largest freshwater body of water in the US, outside of the Great Lakes. The American pioneers from eastern states saw this as a stretch of vast virgin land on which sheep and wild animals had grazed but had never been cultivated. By the time Dr. Moore arrived, scores of individual farms dotted the landscape, but as Tulare Lake retreated, more became continually available.
The soil was rich and productive as it had been brought down and deposited for centuries from the high Sierras by the Kings River and the Los Gatos Creek alluvial fan from the Coast Range. Wells were easy to dig. So water was plentiful for irrigation from shallow wells farm families installed. Raising of sheep and grains were principal concerns of farmers in the area. However, the pioneers were somewhat isolated, since they had to drive by horse as far as 6 miles northeast to Grangeville settlement, to get mail or newspapers, it was farther to Kingston for other supplies. Hanford was not founded until in 1877; the area was called by various names, believed to be of Indian origin, such as Latache, Tailholt, or just, in English, the Lake District. Dr. Lee Moore proved to be a man of vision, he decided to knit together the scores of surrounding farm families, to secure a post office, some local center for conducting business which could be hastened by direct means of communicating with the outside world.
He must have had the hope of attracting the railroad, being planned but was not built until six years later. The first steps he took to organize a community began in early 1872, when he surveyed a 10-acre subdivision in what is now the land west of the present Lemoore High School. In August 1872 he had established the first real estate development in this district and had laid out and named the streets after other
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is a principal agency of the U. S. Federal Statistical System, responsible for producing data about the American people and economy; the Census Bureau is part of the U. S. Department of Commerce and its director is appointed by the President of the United States; the Census Bureau's primary mission is conducting the U. S. Census every ten years, which allocates the seats of the U. S. House of Representatives to the states based on their population; the Bureau's various censuses and surveys help allocate over $400 billion in federal funds every year and it helps states, local communities, businesses make informed decisions. The information provided by the census informs decisions on where to build and maintain schools, transportation infrastructure, police and fire departments. In addition to the decennial census, the Census Bureau continually conducts dozens of other censuses and surveys, including the American Community Survey, the U. S. Economic Census, the Current Population Survey.
Furthermore and foreign trade indicators released by the federal government contain data produced by the Census Bureau. Article One of the United States Constitution directs the population be enumerated at least once every ten years and the resulting counts used to set the number of members from each state in the House of Representatives and, by extension, in the Electoral College; the Census Bureau now conducts a full population count every 10 years in years ending with a zero and uses the term "decennial" to describe the operation. Between censuses, the Census Bureau makes population projections. In addition, Census data directly affects how more than $400 billion per year in federal and state funding is allocated to communities for neighborhood improvements, public health, education and more; the Census Bureau is mandated with fulfilling these obligations: the collecting of statistics about the nation, its people, economy. The Census Bureau's legal authority is codified in Title 13 of the United States Code.
The Census Bureau conducts surveys on behalf of various federal government and local government agencies on topics such as employment, health, consumer expenditures, housing. Within the bureau, these are known as "demographic surveys" and are conducted perpetually between and during decennial population counts; the Census Bureau conducts economic surveys of manufacturing, retail and other establishments and of domestic governments. Between 1790 and 1840, the census was taken by marshals of the judicial districts; the Census Act of 1840 established a central office. Several acts followed that revised and authorized new censuses at the 10-year intervals. In 1902, the temporary Census Office was moved under the Department of Interior, in 1903 it was renamed the Census Bureau under the new Department of Commerce and Labor; the department was intended to consolidate overlapping statistical agencies, but Census Bureau officials were hindered by their subordinate role in the department. An act in 1920 changed the date and authorized manufacturing censuses every two years and agriculture censuses every 10 years.
In 1929, a bill was passed mandating the House of Representatives be reapportioned based on the results of the 1930 Census. In 1954, various acts were codified into Title 13 of the US Code. By law, the Census Bureau must count everyone and submit state population totals to the U. S. President by December 31 of any year ending in a zero. States within the Union receive the results in the spring of the following year; the United States Census Bureau defines four statistical regions, with nine divisions. The Census Bureau regions are "widely used...for data collection and analysis". The Census Bureau definition is pervasive. Regional divisions used by the United States Census Bureau: Region 1: Northeast Division 1: New England Division 2: Mid-Atlantic Region 2: Midwest Division 3: East North Central Division 4: West North Central Region 3: South Division 5: South Atlantic Division 6: East South Central Division 7: West South Central Region 4: West Division 8: Mountain Division 9: Pacific Many federal, state and tribal governments use census data to: Decide the location of new housing and public facilities, Examine the demographic characteristics of communities and the US, Plan transportation systems and roadways, Determine quotas and creation of police and fire precincts, Create localized areas for elections, utilities, etc.
Gathers population information every 10 years The United States Census Bureau is committed to confidentiality, guarantees non-disclosure of any addresses or personal information related to individuals or establishments. Title 13 of the U. S. Code establishes penalties for the disclosure of this information. All Census employees must sign an affidavit of non-disclosure prior to employment; the Bureau cannot share responses, addresses or personal information with anyone including United States or foreign government
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, defined by the federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most identify, indicate whether or not they are of Hispanic or Latino origin. The racial categories represent a social-political construct for the race or races that respondents consider themselves to be and, "generally reflect a social definition of race recognized in this country." OMB defines the concept of race as outlined for the US Census as not "scientific or anthropological" and takes into account "social and cultural characteristics as well as ancestry", using "appropriate scientific methodologies" that are not "primarily biological or genetic in reference." The race categories include both national-origin groups. Race and ethnicity are considered separate and distinct identities, with Hispanic or Latino origin asked as a separate question. Thus, in addition to their race or races, all respondents are categorized by membership in one of two ethnic categories, which are "Hispanic or Latino" and "Not Hispanic or Latino".
However, the practice of separating "race" and "ethnicity" as different categories has been criticized both by the American Anthropological Association and members of US Commission on Civil Rights. In 1997, OMB issued a Federal Register notice regarding revisions to the standards for the classification of federal data on race and ethnicity. OMB developed race and ethnic standards in order to provide "consistent data on race and ethnicity throughout the Federal Government; the development of the data standards stem in large measure from new responsibilities to enforce civil rights laws." Among the changes, OMB issued the instruction to "mark one or more races" after noting evidence of increasing numbers of interracial children and wanting to capture the diversity in a measurable way and having received requests by people who wanted to be able to acknowledge their or their children's full ancestry rather than identifying with only one group. Prior to this decision, the Census and other government data collections asked people to report only one race.
The OMB states, "many federal programs are put into effect based on the race data obtained from the decennial census. Race data are critical for the basic research behind many policy decisions. States require these data to meet legislative redistricting requirements; the data are needed to monitor compliance with the Voting Rights Act by local jurisdictions". "Data on ethnic groups are important for putting into effect a number of federal statutes. Data on Ethnic Groups are needed by local governments to run programs and meet legislative requirements." The 1790 United States Census was the first census in the history of the United States. The population of the United States was recorded as 3,929,214 as of Census Day, August 2, 1790, as mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the United States Constitution and applicable laws."The law required that every household be visited, that completed census schedules be posted in'two of the most public places within, there to remain for the inspection of all concerned...' and that'the aggregate amount of each description of persons' for every district be transmitted to the president."
This law along with U. S. marshals were responsible for governing the census. One third of the original census data has been lost or destroyed since documentation; the data was lost in 1790–1830 time period and included data from: Connecticut, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Delaware, New Jersey, Virginia. Census data included the name of the head of the family and categorized inhabitants as follows: free white males at least 16 years of age, free white males under 16 years of age, free white females, all other free persons, slaves. Thomas Jefferson the Secretary of State, directed marshals to collect data from all thirteen states, from the Southwest Territory; the census was not conducted in Vermont until 1791, after that state's admission to the Union as the 14th state on March 4 of that year. There was some doubt surrounding the numbers, President George Washington and Thomas Jefferson maintained the population was undercounted; the potential reasons Washington and Jefferson may have thought this could be refusal to participate, poor public transportation and roads, spread out population, restraints of current technology.
No microdata from the 1790 population census is available, but aggregate data for small areas and their compatible cartographic boundary files, can be downloaded from the National Historical Geographic Information System. In 1800 and 1810, the age question regarding free white males was more detailed; the 1820
The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak, is a passenger railroad service that provides medium- and long-distance intercity service in the contiguous United States and to nine Canadian cities. Founded in 1971 as a quasi-public corporation to operate many U. S. passenger rail services, it receives a combination of state and federal subsidies but is managed as a for-profit organization. Amtrak's headquarters is located one block west of Union Station in Washington, D. C. Amtrak serves more than 500 destinations in 46 states and three Canadian provinces, operating more than 300 trains daily over 21,400 miles of track. Amtrak owns 623 miles of this track and operates an additional 132 miles of track; some track sections allow trains to run as fast as 150 mph. In fiscal year 2018, Amtrak served 31.7 million passengers and had $3.4 billion in revenue, while employing more than 20,000 people. Nearly 87,000 passengers ride more than 300 Amtrak trains on a daily basis. Nearly two-thirds of passengers come from the 10 largest metropolitan areas.
The name Amtrak is a portmanteau of the words America and trak, the latter itself a sensational spelling of track. In 1916, 98% of all commercial intercity travelers in the United States moved by rail, the remaining 2% moved by inland waterways. Nearly 42 million passengers used railways as primary transportation. Passenger trains were owned and operated by the same owned companies that operated freight trains; as the 20th century progressed, patronage declined in the face of competition from buses, air travel, the automobile. New streamlined diesel-powered trains such as the Pioneer Zephyr were popular with the traveling public but could not reverse the trend. By 1940, railroads held just 67 percent of commercial passenger-miles in the United States. In real terms, passenger-miles had fallen by 40 % from 42 billion to 25 billion. Traffic surged during World War II, aided by troop movement and gasoline rationing; the railroad's market share surged with a massive 94 billion passenger-miles. After the war, railroads rejuvenated their overworked and neglected passenger fleets with fast and luxurious streamliners.
These new trains brought only temporary relief to the overall decline. As postwar travel exploded, passenger travel percentages of the overall market share fell to 46% by 1950, 32% by 1957; the railroads had lost money on passenger service since the Great Depression, but deficits reached $723 million in 1957. For many railroads, these losses threatened financial viability; the causes of this decline were debated. The National Highway System and airports, both funded by the government, competed directly with the railroads, who paid for their own infrastructure. Progressive Era rate regulation limited the railroad's ability to turn a profit. Railroads faced antiquated work rules and inflexible relationships with trade unions. To take one example, workers continued to receive a day's pay for 100-to-150-mile work days. Streamliners covered that in two hours. Matters approached a crisis in the 1960s. Passenger service route-miles fell from 107,000 miles in 1958 to 49,000 miles in 1970, the last full year of private operation.
The diversion of most U. S. Postal Service mail from passenger trains to trucks and freight trains in late 1967 deprived those trains of badly needed revenue. In direct response, the Atchison and Santa Fe Railway filed to discontinue 33 of its remaining 39 trains, ending all passenger service on one of the largest railroads in the country; the equipment the railroads had ordered after World War II was now 20 years old, worn out, in need of replacement. As passenger service declined various proposals were brought forward to rescue it; the 1961 Doyle Report proposed. Similar proposals failed to attract support; the federal government passed the High Speed Ground Transportation Act of 1965 to fund pilot programs in the Northeast Corridor, but this did nothing to address passenger deficits. In late 1969 multiple proposals emerged in the United States Congress, including equipment subsidies, route subsidies, lastly, a "quasi-public corporation" to take over the operation of intercity passenger trains.
Matters were brought to a head on March 5, 1970, when the Penn Central, the largest railroad in the Northeast United States and teetering on bankruptcy, filed to discontinue 34 of its passenger trains. In October 1970, Congress passed, President Richard Nixon signed into law, the Rail Passenger Service Act. Proponents of the bill, led by the National Association of Railroad Passengers, sought government funding to ensure the continuation of passenger trains, they conceived the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, a private entity that would receive taxpayer funding and assume operation of intercity passenger trains. The original working brand name for NRPC was Railpax, but shortly before the company started operating it was changed to Amtrak. There were several key provisions: Any railroad operating intercity passenger service could contract with the NRPC, thereby joining the national system. Participating railroads bought into the NRPC using a formula based on their recent intercity passenger losses.
The purchase price could be satisfied either by cash or rolling stock. Any participating railroad was freed of the obligation to operate intercity passenger service after May 1, 1971, except for those services chosen by the Department of Transportation as part of a "basic system" of servic