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Republicans want N.C. governor to return federal high-speed rail funds

(The following appeared on the News Channel 36 website on March 23, 2011.)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Balking at the enormous price tag of investing in high speed rail, several Republicans at the North Carolina State House have introduced a bill to try to force Gov. Bev Perdue to return more than a half billion dollars in federal money meant for the project.

Tuesday, the governor announced that the state had reached an agreement with rail partners Norfolk Southern Railway Co., Amtrak and N.C. Railroad Co. that allows construction to begin on the state’s rail modernization program. That agreement released $461 million in stimulus money that has already been committed to pay for the project. Total, North Carolina has been awarded $545 million.

The project, expected to create 4,000 jobs, will include building a second track from Charlotte to Greensboro, building bridges to eliminate time-consuming crossings, and straightening tracks to allow the trains to travel at a faster speed.

The full story is available at www.wcnc.com.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

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