South Coast Rail could receive $2.2 billion in financing authorization thanks to a unanimous vote of the Joint Committee on Transportation on Wednesday, officials said.
The financing is part of a $12.1 billion transportation bond bill that will go to the House and Senate, where it will require two-thirds majorities in each chamber for passage.
Approval would designate both specific projects and general long-term bonding, usually for 30 years. It would remain up to Gov. Deval Patrick and succeeding governors to approve spending in future transportation capital budgets.
The South Coast Rail project would connect rail lines from Fall River and New Bedford to Cotley Junction in Berkley, where the lines would converge en route to the designated line into Stoughton and north to South Station in Boston.