High Speed Rail audit report released, shows mismanagement & wasteful spending

News

The High Speed Rail has been audited by California State Auditor Elaine M. Howle. The results were released on Thursday, and in the 87-page report, Howle found the bullet train has been plagued by poor management, and billions of dollars have been wasted.

Local assemblyman Jim Patterson requested that the audit to be done back in January. He said what is published in the report, by the non-partisan auditor, speaks for itself.

The High Speed Rail is supposed to go from San Francisco to Los Angeles, and it’s estimated to cost a total of $77.3 billion dollars to build. After a nearly year long investigation, the non-partisan California State Auditor concluded that the project is riddled with, “flawed decision making and poor contract management”. It’s a scathing report that also finds that the Authority awarded contracts for Valley projects before planning had been completed in order to beat a federal deadline. The report concludes that bad decision making has cost the State billions of dollars so far.

Patterson said, “It is a damning report, and we’re going to be left with precious little, long after the jobs.”

Patterson has fought the bullet train tooth and nail for years. He said newly Elected Governor Gavin Newsom needs to take control.

“It is time to stop lying about what’s there, pretending that there’s a Disneyland ride in our future that is going to be next to the Jetsons, and start dealing with truth, reality,” exclaimed Patterson.

The High Speed Rail Authority said it agreed to the State Audit for improvement and transparency. The audit also concludes the Authority should provide quarterly reports to the State Legislature to keep lawmakers up to date on Valley projects. The Authority said it’s moving swiftly to fully implement the recommendations of the State Auditor.

A Federal Audit is expected to be published in a few months, and that report could impact Federal funding for the project.

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