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Galgiani says fed funds for high-speed rail is 'vote of confidence' for California project

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Cathleen Galgiani, author of the 2008 High Speed Rail bond, called today’s announcement by the U. S. Department of Transportation of an additional $300 million for the California High-Speed Rail project, “a vote of confidence for California ’s High Speed Rail project.”

“The Federal government has invested nearly $3.3 billion in California ’s project, the most of any state, because California has taken the lead in developing a true high speed rail system and is the only state to have passed a bond measure," she said in a news release. "This new investment also shows that the federal government understands how important high speed rail is to California 's economy and how important California 's economy is to the national recovery.

“This is good news for advancing a 21st century transportation project for California, for getting California’s economy back on track and for the hundreds of thousands of Californians who will benefit from good jobs and economic growth. These jobs and the economic activity that they create will have a tremendous effect on the economy of the San Joaquin Valley and all of California .

“This additional funding along with a 20% match from the Proposition 1A bond brings us closer to completing the test track and backbone of the statewide system from Bakersfield to Merced in the San Joaquin Valley."

Galgiani, chair of the Assembly’s Select Committee on High Speed Rail for California , has been one of the legislature’s strongest advocates for high speed rail, the news release said “Californians voted for a bond measure to build a high-speed train project in the midst of the economic crisis. We have support from a broad coalition in all geographic regions throughout the state. We are all unified in our goal of obtaining a clean, safe, interstate transportation system, as well as offering an economic boost to the state by providing Californian’s jobs, Galgiani said in the release.

Combined with matching state and local funding, the federal infusion could generate billions in private funding to launch the initial Anaheim-to-San Francisco phase in a system that eventually will stretch to 800 miles, linking most of the state's major population centers.