WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Tuesday night it was canceling grant funds to California’s high-speed rail project.
According to a statement, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) plans to terminate $929 million in federal grant funds yet to be paid for the California high-speed rail project initially planned to connect the L.A. Basin to the San Francisco Bay Area.
In addition, the Department announced it is exploring every legal option to obtain the $2.5 billion in federal funds FRA previously granted California for the now-defunct project.
Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the scaling back of the state’s high-speed rail project in his first State of the State speech last week. The price of the project skyrocketed from $45 billion to $77 billion.
“Let’s be real,” Newsome said. “The current project, as planned, would cost too much and take too long.”
However, after his announcement, President Donald Trump excoriated the project, tweeting on Feb. 13, “We want that money back now. Whole project is a “green” disaster!” (RELATED: Trump Slams High-Speed Rail: ‘Hundreds Of Times More Expensive’ Than A Wall)
Newsom, though, tweeted back, “This is CA’s money, allocated by Congress for this project. We’re not giving it back.”
FRA Administrator Ronald Batory wrote, in a letter to California officials, that the state authority in charge of the rail project did not comply with the terms of the $929.6 million in federal funds. This included not making reasonable progress on the project and significantly endangering substantial performance.
Kerry Picket is a host on SiriusXM Patriot 125