AirTalk for May 4, 2010

Bullet train stuck at the station? Report shows high speed rail plan inadequately funded

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SAM YEH/AFP/Getty Images

Trains of Taiwan's high-speed rail company rest at the platform at Zuoying station, south of Kaohsiung city, on September 22, 2009.

In 2008, voters passed Prop. 1A, a $9 billion bond to launch the largest infrastructure project in the state’s history: a 200-plus mph bullet train to connect California’s largest cities. Planning is now under way for the first legs—from LA to Anaheim and from San Jose to San Francisco. But there’s a catch: it’s ultimately going to cost $42 billion and the High Speed Rail Authority hasn’t secured the Federal and private matching funds it will need to complete the project. And a report from the Joint Legislative Audit Committee warns the system may never be finished under current plans. What’s the key to getting the train completed? Or is it a boondoggle that should be stopped now?

Guests:

Elaine Howle, California State Auditor

Curt Pringle, Mayor of Anaheim, Chairman of the California High Speed Rail Authority


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