CA State Treasurer’s Harsh Words on High Speed Rail

In an interview with the San Diego Union Tribune, State Treasurer Bill Lockyer, a Democrat, expressed some serious doubts about the state’s high speed rail plan.

Asked about private investment:

“There are segments of the line that you could run sensibly, principally L.A. to San Diego,” the treasurer said. “I hear from the world of Wall Street investment bankers about what they think makes sense. And almost universally, they’re convinced that no one can finance the routes from L.A. to the Bay Area, that it just will never work economically, certainly in the foreseeable future.”

Asked about the state’s $9.95 billion in bonds authorized by voters as the state’s only funding for the project:

“Given the many outstanding questions about the project, “I would be reticent to try to go to market to issue bonds to finance the state’s share,” the treasurer said.”