Follow the Money: Funding High-Speed Rail

California's proposed high-speed rail line is to be funded by a patchwork of federal, state, and local funding mechanisms. Reporter Dierdre Newman sorts through the morass.
May 28, 2009, 9am PDT | Tim Halbur
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"In addition to the $9 billion approved by voters, other sources of funding for the project, according to Kopp, include: $2 to $3 billion from local and regional agencies; $12 to $16 billion from federal grants, including the recently-passed stimulus bill; and $6.5 to $7.5 billion from private sources. Interest from private sources is strong, [High Speed Rail Authority head Quentin] Kopp said. A year ago, the Authority solicited private interest and 28 firms responded in writing. Twenty-three of these expressed interest in supplying construction, operations and/or equipment, and five proposed supplying capital. The Authority's consulting firm in Washington, D.C has reverified continuing interest from 12 of the 28 entities, Kopp said.

Federal funding sources include an anticipated portion of the $8 billion allocated for high-speed rail in President Barack Obama's stimulus package and an expected piece of the recommended $1 billion for high-speed rail projects across the country in the 2010 fiscal year budget. In fact, Obama has recommended $1 billion funding for five years, Kopp said."

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Published on Wednesday, May 27, 2009 in spot.us
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