I would like to add to Joe Thompson’s assessment of the proposed
bullet train proposal. I firmly agree that the state should not get
into the rail business.
I would like to add to Joe Thompson’s assessment of the proposed bullet train proposal. I firmly agree that the state should not get into the rail business. Proponents claim that the San Francisco to Los Angeles project would cost $25 billion but anyone familiar with Boston’s “Big Dig,” one of the largest transportation projects ever attempted, should know that cost overruns have exceeded 300 percent of the original budget and is years behind schedule. A bullet train project of the size proposed would likely also end up the same way.
Supporters want to finance the project with state bonds but this is unwise at a time when California faces a $24 billion budget deficit and already has record bond indebtedness. This is a time to be fiscally prudent. But the construction lobby and union interests have pushed hard to get initial financing on the ballot.
Unfortunately a number of decisions have been made in Sacramento for political reasons and have not been in the best interest of the public, which is why the state is in its current predicament. If it is economically feasible, let the private sector take the risks and build the bullet train.
Warren Seifert, Gilroy
Submitted Thursday, Oct. 17 to [email protected]