Scott says high-speed rail study due in February
Gov.-elect Rick Scott told reporters Tuesday he is awaiting a feasibility study on a high-speed rail line between Tampa and Orlando due in February before deciding whether to take billions in federal dollars for the project, according to the St. Petersburg Times.
Scott met with more than two dozen state lawmakers at a Tampa hotel today to get their input on various issues of concern, which also included the prospect of high-speed rail in Florida.
Federal transportation officials have offered the state around $2 billion, but Scott would need to formally accept it. Incoming governors in Wisconsin and Ohio have already told federal officials they will reject funding for high-speed rail allotted for their states upon taking office.
With surveying work already underway along I-4, the project has in recent weeks come under fire by some lawmakers questioning its financial viability. Scott has repeatedly said private investors would need to take part in the project for it work, taking the burden off Florida’s taxpayers.
Several lawmakers in Florida, including Democrats Sen. Bill Nelson and Rep. Kathy Castor, have urged Scott the accept the federal dollars. One member of Scott’s transition team, state Sen. Paula Dockery, R-Lakeland, has also publicly supported construction of the high-speed rail line.