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February 20, 2013



I had a chance to catch up with Jerry Deal over the weekend and he was prepared for my questions about the lawsuit funding since he had read this blog post. From what I heard, Jerry’s main issues are a basic distrust of lawsuits to resolve these kinds of issues, a view that this is an issue for the Central Valley since that is where the suit originates and a view that HSR is the best way to fund the electrification of Caltrain.

We had a spirited discussion which is one of the things I like about Jerry in general. His response to my question about the validity of lawsuits and whether or not he viewed the High-speed Rail Authority as being in compliance with Proposition 1A was “I don’t know”. My response was “That is what the lawsuit is about and is the only way to find out”. My response about the Central Valley point was that a good cause should be funded regardless of where it originates when the overall project will do as much damage as this would do to Burlingame. Jerry seems to think that a solid two-track limit is sufficient protection for B’game.

And we went back and forth on whether committing the state (i.e. the taxpayers) to a $100 billion expense to fund what would really “only” cost $1.5 billion is a wise move? I think the answer is pretty clearly “no”, but like the first two points, Jerry and I must agree to disagree. I hope I captured a good 20 minute conversation accurately, but Jerry is free to correct me if he chooses.

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