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The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) and state of California yesterday finalized settlement negotiations to restore $929 million in federal grant funding to California’s high-speed rail project.
The action comes after months of negotiations to restore funding that was previously rescinded by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) under the Trump administration in 2019.
“This settlement agreement follows intensive negotiations between the parties and reflects the federal government’s ongoing partnership in the development of high-speed rail,” said FRA Deputy Administrator Amit Bose in a prepared statement. “It also underscores the [California High Speed Rail Authority’s] commitment to deliver this transformative infrastructure project. “
The USDOT is committed to fulfilling its oversight responsibilities for the project, Bose added.
“This settlement is an important step in advancing an economically transformational project in California,” he said.
The California High-Speed Rail project is under construction along 119 miles in the Central Valley, with more than 35 active construction sites and an average of 1,100 workers a day on the various job sites. Restoration of the grant funding will aid the California High-Speed Rail Authority in their effort to complete the initial operating segment of the nation’s first high-speed rail system, according to California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office.
“Tonight’s action by the federal government is further proof that California and the Biden-Harris administration share a common vision — clean, electrified transportation that will serve generations to come,” Newsom said in a prepared statement. “Restoring nearly $929 million in grant funding back to [the] project will continue to spur job creation, advance the project and move the state one step closer to getting trains running in California as soon as possible.”