California sues Trump administration over high-speed rail funding cut

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California announced Tuesday that its suing President Donald Trump’s  administration in response to the administration’s decision to cancel funding for the state’s high-speed rail project.

The Federal Railroad Administration cancelled nearly $1 billion in funding last week, citing a lack of progress on the project.

Congress awarded the money for the project, which would introduce high-speed rail transportation between San Francisco and Los Angeles, nearly a decade ago. The project has encountered delays and unexpected costs and is now expected to be completed by 2033 for an estimated $77 billion.

In order to keep the money, the state would need to finish a stretch of the track in Central Valley by 2022, a deadline that the Trump administration says California cannot meet.

Gov. Gavin Newsom says there’s more to the budget cancellation than the high-speed rail project.

“The decision was precipitated by President Trump’s overt hostility to California, its challenge to his border wall initiatives, and what he called the ‘green disaster’ high-speed rail project,’ the state wrote in the lawsuit filed in the Northern District of California.

The Central Valley segment of the track is estimated to cost $12 billion to complete. The Trump administration’s funding cut would eliminate $929 million that the state had expected to begin using by 2021.

In addition to the $929 million, the Trump administration is also looking into possibilities to reclaim an additional $2.5 billion that California has already spent on the project.

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