Never thought I would see this story. A couple of weeks ago the Judge ruled that the High Speed Rail Authority lied about having a finance plan—that they had no way to pay for the $200 billion boondoggle for unions and special interests. Now they must come back with an honest finance plan showing where every dime will come from to pay for this disaster. We know the Feds and the State ares tapped out. We know that in more than ten years the private sector has invested ZERO DOLLARS—they know the value of the choo choo train.
Yesterday a Federal Commission ruled that government, in the form of the choo choo can not violate environmental laws. The train must have an approved plan. That means it could be years (because of lawsuits) before we hear a serious discussion about this train again—and that will be in the context of how fraud by government is easy to perpetrate. (Think of the ObamaCare fraud)
“The federal Surface Transportation Board has turned down a request from the California High-Speed Rail Authority for conditional approval of the 114-mile Bakersfield-to-Fresno portion of the route before completion of a final environmental report.
No money, no environmental report—where do we get our money back?
Kitty Felde, KPCC, 12/4/13
The California High Speed Rail Authority says construction delays could result in a “substantial aggregate increase” in the cost of the project.
California’s high speed rail line has hit another speed bump.
The federal Surface Transportation Board has turned down a request from the California High-Speed Rail Authority for conditional approval of the 114-mile Bakersfield-to-Fresno portion of the route before completion of a final environmental report.
That environmental review is expected to be completed by the spring, but the Rail Authority says it’s under a tight deadline: if contractors can’t start work on the portion of the project south of Fresno by July of next year, the agency would have to rebid the project in two parts. That would create what the rail agency described in its application as a “substantial aggregate increase” in the cost of the project.
The rail agency also suggested that if the Surface Transportation Board doesn’t act now, there may be another delay in the works because the board may have a vacancy as of the first of the year.
The three-member Surface Transportation Board said while it “sometimes” has made conditional approvals in the past, it has not done so in several years. The board ruled the Rail Authority hasn’t given any “unique or compelling” arguments for conditional approval.
Republican Congressman Jeff Denham of Turlock, a long time critic of the high speed rail project, calls the ruling “another major blow in a series of setbacks to the California project.”
Denham points out the decision follows a California court ruling last week that requires both an environmental review and a funding plan before issuing state bonds.
The California High Speed Rail Authority had no immediate comment.