Bob Balgenorth Appointed to California High Speed Rail Authority
March 24, 2011 - Senate President pro tem Darrell Steinberg announced today that the Senate Rules Committee has appointed SBCTC President Bob Balgenorth to serve as a member of the California High Speed Rail Authority.
The Authority is charged with overseeing the planning for the construction of California's high-speed train network, including evaluating technologies, criteria for awarding and selecting franchisees, routes and terminal sites; and a financing plan.
"I'm happy about this appointment and eager to get to work on making high speed rail a reality for California," Balgenorth said. "I want a better and more modern transportation system for California, to keep pace with the rest of the world. I want the benefits of reduced emissions and a cleaner environment. I want the economic benefits, including 160,000 good construction jobs and 450,000 permanent jobs for Californians."
California voters approved a $9.95 billion bond issue for high speed rail in November 2008. In January 2010, President Obama announced that California would receive $2.25 billion in federal stimulus funding for the project. An additional $624 million in federal funding was reallocated to California after Republican governors in other states foolishly rejected their funds, to our benefit.
"We've been talking about high speed rail in California for decades," Balgenorth said. "It's time to start working, to start benefiting from better transportation, a cleaner environment, and good jobs for California construction workers."