Trump cancels funding for high-speed rail

May 17, 2019

By JOSH FRIEDMAN

The Trump Administration has followed through on its threat to revoke nearly $1 billion in funding for California’s controversial high-speed rail project, a decision the state says it will challenge in court. [Cal Coast Times]

On Thursday, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) announced it terminated an agreement with the California High-Speed Rail Authority that contained $928.6 million in funding. Likewise, the federal agency said it is considering all of its options to recover $2.5 billion in funds already given to the high-speed rail project.

California has repeatedly failed to comply with the terms of the agreement and has failed to make reasonable progress on the project, the FRA said in a statement.

“Additionally, California has abandoned its original vision of a high-speed passenger rail service connecting San Francisco and Los Angeles, which was essential to its applications for FRA grant funding,” the statement says.

The planned high-speed rail, which President Donald Trump has criticized repeatedly, was intended to link Northern California to Southern California and, in particular, San Francisco to Los Angeles. The project has been delayed by problems with securing funding, acquiring privately held land and fighting legal challenges.

In February, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that California would shift its focus to constructing a rail line from Bakersfield to Merced. Newsom has claimed, though, the state still intends to complete the rail link between San Francisco and Los Angeles.

The following month, the Federal Railroad Administration informed California that it planned to terminate the $928.6 funding agreement.

In a letter sent Thursday to the High-Speed Rail Authority, the federal agency said California was chronically behind on construction; unable to accurately forecast a long-term schedule and costs for the project; and unable to submit fundamental documents, such as budgets, funding contribution plans and project management plans.

Newsom responded with a statement calling the cancellation of federal funding for the high-speed rail political retribution and saying California would challenge the Trump Administration’s decision in court.

“The Trump Administration’s action is illegal and a direct assault on California, our green infrastructure and thousands of Central Valley workers who are building this project,” Newsom said.

“Just as we have seen from the Trump Administration’s attacks on our clean air standards, our immigrant communities and in countless other areas, the Trump Administration is trying to exact political retribution on our state.

“This is California’s money, appropriated by Congress, and we will vigorously defend it in court.”


Loading...
CentralCoaster

Prioritize connecting the Mexican border with sanctuary cities. ヽ༼ຈل͜ຈ༽ノ


mercut1469

So, America admitting we can’t build what the rest of the first world already has? And, so much for Trump’s promise to rebuild infrastructure in this nation. Not one single federal project has been started under his administration. I guess those guys on Wall Street need the $1 billion that it would have taken to get modern transportation in California because, with the Trump tax cut, that’s exactly where it’s going.


shelworth

Considering it’s no longer “High speed” he’s only doing right by the other 49 States…


Mike Morgan

Trump Administration is trying to exact political retribution on our state._Newsom


Really? I wonder why?


Snoid

The feds need to cut off this new 3rd world dump’s funding entirely and let the bigmouths who run it see where their 6th biggest economy takes them. Steal a billion from the tax payers, make bad on plans after year of nothingness, and then hope to sue when the funding is taken away, seriously??? Pound sand Gov Nuisance


tomsquawk

Newsom responded with a statement calling the cancellation of federal funding for the high-speed rail political retribution and saying California would challenge the Trump Administration’s decision in court. I like that if “retribution” means you screwed up! No excuses please. I’ve been involved in “bond deals”. Everyone but the people make money. Bait & Switch? No, not that smart.


info

City, State, and Counties lose federal funding all the time when their projects are delayed or conditions of the grants are not met. Retribution or accountability? Probably both.


Rich in MB

““Just as we have seen from the Trump Administration’s attacks on our clean air standards,


our immigrant communities


and in countless other areas, the Trump Administration is trying to exact political retribution on our state.”


Did the State just admit that the High Speed Rail was just an Illegal Immigrant Train? Why yes….yes they did,


DocT

Trump, in my view, has now done his first “right” thing since being in office.


This project was a wasteful boondoggle before it got worse. It most definitely should be cancelled. Good job Mr. President.


Too bad it may very well be the only thing you got right during your time on the throne.