High Speed Rail: GAO Report On Rail Mixed Bag

California High Speed Rail

High Speed Rail: GAO Report On Rail Mixed Bag

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A new federal report gives decent grades on California's High-Speed Rail Authority's business plan, saying its ridership and revenue estimates look "reasonable."

But the report notes it could be doing a better job of predicting cost estimates and the biggest issue is still money. The report says a funding gap of nearly $40 billion dollars remains, and it's unlikely that money will come from the federal government.

"I think a lot of the criticism is becoming obsolete," says Dan Richard, the rail authority's chairman. "There was criticism of our ridership projections and our cost projections and in fact, we've got our arms around those numbers."

But critics like Kathy Hamilton from the Community Coalition on High-Speed Rail point out that without knowing where the rest of the money is coming from and without knowing the true operating costs, the project is still too risky.

Our investigative producer Heidi Cuda has this story.

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