Costa unveils legislation to fund completion of California’s High-Speed Rail, other National rail projects

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After leading the fight in Congress for investment in America’s national rail infrastructure, Congressman Jim Costa unveiled the High-Speed Rail Corridor Development Act, legislation that would provide $32 billion to fund projects in federally designated high-speed rail corridors.

“This legislation will provide the needed funding to finish California’s High-Speed Rail project. California is leading the nation in building modern, green train technology, which will get our cars off the road and improve our air quality”, said Costa.

Last week, CHSRA published a draft of its 2020 business plan, which summarizes the authority’s progress on building an electrified high-speed rail system to connect Northern and Southern California through the Central Valley.

Between now and 2030, the authority has a budget of $20.6 billion to $23.4 billion to advance the program, according to the draft business plan.

“We must invest in our future for our health and our economy. We already see the benefits, with new business investments in our communities and more high-paying jobs,” Costa said. “The 119-miles of construction has already employed more than 3,000 workers and supported 500 small businesses. This is the time to bring our transportation infrastructure into the 21st century. We can, and we will, get this job done!”

The High-Speed Rail Corridor Development Act is a reauthorization of the High-Speed Rail Corridor Development Program and builds upon the success of the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008 and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009.

It authorizes $32 billion dollars through 2024 for the High-Speed Rail Corridor Investment program and also authorizes the Secretary of Transportation to award grants for projects that are part of a state rail plan, encourage intermodal connectivity, and those with environmental benefits.

“Building transformative infrastructure projects – like high-speed rail – requires leaders with vision and determination. Congressman Costa has always demonstrated he has both when it comes to building clean, fast high-speed rail. His bill represents the kind of partnership we need with the federal government to get this important work done.” – Brian Kelly, CEO, California High Speed Rail Authority.

the CHSRA report says:

  • There are currently 36 active construction sites, 30 of those in the Central Valley.
  • More than 3,500 construction workers have been engaged in work along the line, and 600 are working on the Central Valley portion.
  • More than 520 small businesses have had involvement in the project thus far.
  • Approximately 350 miles of the bullet train are under construction — 51 miles between San Francisco and San Jose; 171 miles between Merced and Bakersfield; and 130 miles between Victorville and the California-Nevada border.

“Congressman Costa’s continued partnership to help us close the funding gaps to complete not only Valley to Valley but the entire project, puts us a step closer to that reality. Together, we look forward to bringing the tremendous economic, transportation and environmental benefits of truly high-speed rail to California,” said Lenny Mendonca, Chairman, California High Speed Rail Authority.

There are currently 30 active construction sites within the California High-Speed Rail system between Madera and Kern counties, with more than 500 certified small businesses working to build the Central Valley segment. To date, more than 3,000 construction workers have been dispatched to the project.

“Increasing mobility and building infrastructure are key tools of economic development, especially for the Central Valley. I am proud to join Rep. Costa on this bill to authorize key funding for projects in federally designated high-speed rail corridors,” said Congressman T.J. Cox.

“If America wants to continue its leadership of the world economy and counteract the effects of climate change, we must dream big and upgrade our infrastructure to ensure Californians can move efficiently and effectively as the Central Valley grows.”

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