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Proposed initiative would ban voter-passed bonds for Calif. high speed rail

7:29 PM, Jan 13, 2014   |    comments
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SACRAMENTO - An initiative process is underway that may put a red light on California's high speed rail project.

The measure seeks to ban the sale of voter-approved bonds for the bullet train system. Any unspent money would have to be used to pay off the debt.

A recent Field Poll showed 56 percent of likely voters oppose the rail project.

Now supporters of the new initiative hope to gather  504,660 valid voter signatures to qualify  it for a ballot measure in November.

We hope that it does get traction because I think Assemblyman Gorell recognizes as do we that this project bears no relationship to the project that was approved by the voters," Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association said. "This is an entirely different project. and for Jeff Gorell to try to get another vote on this is absolutely appropriate and we approve his efforts."

In 2008, voters approved borrowing $9 billion to help pay for the bullet train. Since then, the original cost estimate of $45 billion has climbed to $68 billion. In November,  a Sacramento judge blocked the sale of $8 billion in bonds for the project. and the judge told the California High Speed Rail Authority authority to come up with a better plan to fund the project. Gov. Brown's budget proposes  using $250 million cap and trade revenue to help pay for the high speed rail system.

Capitol Television News Service

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