"Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray has blasted the railroad giant CSX, saying the national freight carrier is making 'completely unreasonable' demands in negotiations with the state over efforts to improve commuter rail service in Boston's western suburbs."
"'This whole issue of indemnification is outrageous,' Murray said in an interview. 'They want taxpayers to pay for their own negligence. . . . They want to hand taxpayers the bill.'" - Boston Globe
A Florida story? No, a Massachusetts story, but note the parallels between rail deals in the two states.
Florida lawmakers, are you paying attention?
- Are you no longer required to conduct "government in the sunshine" - something missing from previous CSX negotiations to shift freight trains out of Orlando and to build the mother of all rail yards in Polk County?
- Are you not concerned by the lack of unbiased studies on the effects of prodigious increases in rail and truck traffic to other communities, on regional transportation planning, on safety, environmental and quality of life concerns, and on the long-term financial costs to Florida citizens?
- Why should state and local taxpayers be forced to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for corporate welfare that benefits CSX, wealthy developers and their political friends?
- Why are all other plans for commuter rail in Central Florida, including high speed rail linking Tampa to Orlando to Miami, being ignored in favor of the one being pushed by CSX and the city of Orlando - to the detriment of other parts of the state?