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techkenyot.com February 16, 2019


California's liberal Democratic governor nixes high-speed rail line due to cost

13 February 2019, 04:17 | Glen Norman

Gary Reyes TNS Newscom

California High Speed Rail construction

Gavin Newsom is preparing to deliver his first State of the State address a day after declaring he wouldn't participate in the Trump administration's "political theater" over border security. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) recently introduced her Green New Deal initiative and one of the key points was developing a high speed rail to where using airplanes was no longer necessary.

California's high-speed choo-choo train drifted further into bizarro world Tuesday when the project's lead government body announced a $2.8 billion jump in costs for the first 119-mile section of the planned 800-mile route.

And in a tweet, the governor's chief of staff, Ann O'Leary, said Newsom "fully committed to high speed rail as part of All in California economic transformation, and clean energy future".

"Let's be real. The current project, as planned, would cost too much and respectfully take too long. There's been too little oversight and not enough transparency". "I wish there were".

Newsom has laid out his vision for California twice already, in his inaugural address and through his first crack at the state budget.

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In late November, a state audit highlighted the flaws in the project, which began the pressure on then Gov. -elect Newsom to consider cutting back the construction of the train or make other major changes.

Newsom said the state will finish environmental reviews from San Francisco to Los Angeles, "connect the revitalized Central Valley to other parts of the state, and continue to push for more federal funding and private dollars".

The cost of building the train, at last estimate, was put at $77 billion and wouldn't be completed until 2033, the Associated Press reported.

The state got $3.5 billion in federal funding to complete the Merced to Bakersfield line.

The embattled $77-billion bullet train has been an embarrassment for the Golden State and has been plagued by problems nearly from the start. The Democrat suggested building a high-speed rail line between Bakersfield and Merced - a distance of 160 miles - rather than a project created to connect the state's two largest cities.

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'Last week, we heard (Trump) stand up at the State of the Union and offer a vision of an America fundamentally at odds with California values, ' he said.

Brown had agreed to deploy troops at the Trump administration's request previous year, although he said they couldn't participate in immigration enforcement.

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham, a democrat, also ordered the removal of most of the National Guard troops deployed at her state's border after her Republican predecessor granted the Trump administration's request a year ago, Reuters reported.

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced he would not participate in the manufactured border crisis and, therefore, pull more than two-thirds of California's National Guard Troops.

Newsom criticized "fear-mongering that's coming out of the White House", likening Trump's rhetoric on immigrants to George W. Bush opposing same-sex marriage when he was president, during an era when LGBT people had less public support and fewer civil protections.

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