We've been tracking the effort to have another vote on High-cost Rail and now is the time to make an appeal for funds. This is an excerpt from the appeal that is circulating around the state on behalf of State Senator Doug LaMalfa (R-Richvale) and former U.S. Congressman George Radanovich's fundraising effort. You can find the donation tab on the website www.ReVoteRail.com.
You may have the impression that High Speed Rail is ‘dead’. Quite the contrary, it is still alive, although maybe not too well. But it is still a reality. Soon, the state legislature will likely vote to approve issuing up to $2.7 Billion of Prop.1A bonds for the project in order to meet the matching requirement to use the available federal funds. This money will be spent largely in the Central Valley on the infamous ‘Train to Nowhere’. In all likelihood the project will proceed since the Governor, hence the Democratic Caucus and the Obama Administration are putting maximum pressure on the State’s Legislators.
Recently, a petition drive has been initiated that will result in a ballot measure, in 2014, to stop any further spending of Prop. 1A bonds, thus lessening the potential negative impact on the state’s bonding capacity and future General Fund expenditures. There is a 150-day window for gathering over 800,000 signatures. To do this requires considerable upfront funding.
Polls have shown that 2/3 of California voters having seen the differences between the expectations set forth in Prop 1A and what has transpired since then are ready to kill the project. However, special interests are pushing to move the project ahead. The only sure way to forever stop the project is by passing the proposed initiative.
Numerous law suits may delay or impede the progress of the project but unless it is taken off the books altogether it will continue in some form continuing to spend tax payer dollars and put the state further into debt. The project can only be stopped by completely cutting off use of the Prop. 1A funds.
They have until October 15, 2012 to collect signatures of 504,760 registered voters in order to qualify the measure for a revote. Since it is highly unlikely that our elected officials in Sacto will do the right thing on their own and kill this massive waste of taxpayer money that will harm the environment as a side-effect, it looks like a ballot measure is the next best hope. Www.ReVoteRail.com.