A case of mistaken identity has embroiled California in election controversy, as claims of bias and misinformation swirl around Prop 13 (2020), Prop 13 (1978), and an anticipated "split roll" initiative.
The Trump administration has canceled a nearly $1 billion grant assigned to the California high-speed rail project and is attempting to get the state to return the $2.5 billion it has already spent on the $77 billion project.
The state has less than one-third the funds necessary to build the 800-mile line connecting Northern and Southern California, depending on the cost estimate. The immediate goal is to build a 119-mile section in the Central Valley.
Costs for the initial construction segment, 119 miles from Madera to just outside Bakersfield, jumped $2.8 billion in what the consultant called the "worst-case scenario," to $10.6 billion, or over $89 million per mile.
A summary report of California's 9-month pilot program to test the use of a mileage charge to replace the gas tax to fund road infrastructure has been released. Next steps include exploring available technology to implement the road charge.
Uncertainty as to whether cap-and-trade funding would continue past 2020 and opposition to the initial operating segment leaving out the city of Merced were two issues that arose during a Assembly Transportation Committee hearing of the plan.
In this San Francisco Chronicle Open Forum, Brian Kelly, secretary of the California State Transportation Agency, makes the case that maintenance as well as capital costs be included when financing new infrastructure projects.