Calif.’s high-speed-rail officials postpone vote on revised business plan

Calif.’s high-speed-rail officials postpone vote on revised business plan

The board responsible for California’s $64 billion high-speed rail project postponed a vote on a revised business plan to provide officials with more time to assuage lawmakers and citizens upset by proposed changes.

The revised plan proposes to shift the high-speed train’s starting point from Central Valley to Merced. It also suggests adding a new station in Wasco, near Bakersfield.

According to the new plan, the bullet train will head from the Central Valley to San Jose. The previous plan proposed to the train should head from the Central Valley to the San Fernando Valley.

Frequent changes in the plans and funding have prompted severe criticism by many lawmakers and citizen groups in the recent past.

Citizens for High-Speed Rail Accountability group member Frank Oliveira said, “Just like the past two business plans, which were deemed great ideas at the time, I expect this body will approve this business plan and we'll all be here again in four years with a different direction again.”

California’s legislative analyst’s office has warned that the project lacks a long-term funding source, but High-Speed Rail Authority board members reaffirmed their commitment to complete the project and bring the bullet train to Southern California.

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