Bullet train running off the rails, says veteran political observer

California’s high speed rail continues to run afoul of financial reality, according to a veteran observer of state politics.

Retired Judge and former California State Senator Quintin Kopp says the project is straying from the original vision.

“High speed rail is meant to travel at a maximum speed of 220 miles per hour. What’s being built now is diesel track.”

A new segment announced by the state rail authority has raised the hackles of local residents who live near the proposed route through Sun Valley, San Fernando, Santa Clarita and Agua Dulce

The financing is also running into trouble. Kopp says the segment of the project in the Central Valley will consume just about all the money from the $9 billion bond issue and the $3.5 billion from provided under President Obama’s stimulus package.

“There’s no other money available. The House of Representatives of the United States has twice passed a bill which prohibits any funding for the California High Speed Rail project. There’s no private money available.”

Adding to the bleak outlook for the project is the Authority’s failure to purchase land in the San Joaquin Valley needed for the right of way. The cost of that real estate has recently been estimated to have nearly doubled since the recession.

Kopp was a guest on McIntyre in the Morning.

By Sandy Wells

KABC News

 

 

 

 

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