The California High-Speed Rail Authority hopes to start the project's $6 billion first phase by the end of the year. But first, state lawmakers have to authorize a little under half that money - from bonds voters approved a few years back. And this new report from the California High-Speed Rail Peer Review Group says:
HSRPEER1A / Kempton: "We can't at this time recommend that the state go forward with the appropriation of bond proceeds."
Former CalTrans Director Will Kempton chairs that group.
HSRPEER1B / Kempton: "The fundamental flaw that we see is that there's no identification of a long-term funding source that gets us to a point where we can begin to attract private investment and start moving the project forward in a positive way."
The High-Speed Rail Authority calls the report "deeply flawed" and "misleading" - and says a delay would put billions of federal dollars at risk.