Galgiani applauds MOU between state and feds on high-speed rail

SACRAMENTO-- Today, Assemblymember Cathleen Galgiani (D-Livingston) participated in a press conference applauding the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between state and federal agencies on promoting the environmentally sustainability of California’s high-speed train system.

“High-Speed Rail is a pivotal step in providing an environmentally clean way to travel,” stated Galgiani. “The MOU establishes a framework under which the signatory agencies can work together to achieve an environmentally sustainable high-speed train system in California. It defines common goals, identifies key areas for collaboration and defines expectations and terms for signatory agencies.”

California has the top three out of five most congested urban areas in the United States, which accounts for $20 billion a year in wasted fuel and lost time; transportation accounts for 41 percent of the state’s emissions and the state is the 12th largest source of greenhouse gas emissions on the planet, according to a news release from Galgiani's office. A clean, fast and efficient public transportation option is necessary. High-speed trains will use one-third the energy of air travel and one-fifth the energy of auto travel in addition to eliminating more than 12 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emission – that’s the equivalent of removing more than 1 million cars from California’s roads annually, according to the release.

The state and federal agencies announced they share a common vision for a high-speed train system using environmentally preferable practices that will protect the health of California’s residents, preserve California’s natural resources, and minimize air and water pollution, energy usage and other environmental impacts, according to the release.

“Today’s signing brings a framework for working together to ensure that California’s high-speed train system helps protect the health of California residents. It also protects our state’s environment from the initial planning stage through the operation and maintenance of the high-speed rail system,” expressed Galgiani. “I look forward to working with the High-Speed Rail Authority and members of the Obama administration to ensure that California honors the will of the voters.”

Galgiani is a strong supporter of a high-speed train system in California, the news release said She authored AB 3034 which placed Proposition 1A, the California High-Speed Train Bond Act of 2008, on the ballot. Assemblymember Galgiani has also worked with California’s Labor Community, the California Chamber of Commerce and the Sierra Club to secure over $3 billion in federal stimulus funding for High-Speed Rail.