Yesterday, a "renowned group of transportation and financial experts" warned lawmakers that funding the state's $99 billion high-speed train is an "immense financial risk." The biggest concern from the group was California's "plan to spend all available funding -- $6 billion -- on a small stretch of track in the Central Valley and hope for the rest of the money."
What's more, the bullet train faces a $25 - $30 billion shortfall during its first phase, with "no available funding sources that could fill that gap."
In part of an excellent piece on the high-speed rail warning, Mike Rosenberg of the San Jose Mercury News reports:
The report's release coincides with Wednesday's start of the Legislative session, which will end with a vote this June on whether to authorize $2.7 billion in state bond funds to match $3.3 billion in federal money.
"It is particularly compelling because this comes from a group with no political ax to grind, and undeniable experience and expertise on a global basis," state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, who has helped lead the discussion on the project in Sacramento. "It adds to an accumulating pile of concern."
On the flip side, a super-duper fast train linking Northern California to Souther California would be, you know, way cool. Alas. But do we still need this miraculous train built during our horrific economic climate? Watch this ABC 7 report and decide for yourself.
If the mood should strike, you can read the California High-Speed Rail report in its entirety below: