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Letter | Build a trail now and save the rail for later

Letter | Build a trail now and save the rail for later

Greenways fails to disclose the following four facts about rail transit: a) abandoning the rail line carries an $11 million penalty, the required payback to the State Transportation Commission which granted this money to the county for passenger rail in 2011; b) removal of the rail line will result in an eight-year delay in trail construction, whereas rail approval will result in 16 miles of trail construction in the next five years; c) rail transit makes the Santa Cruz/Watsonville area eligible for up to $900 million in grants from Caltrans through the 2018 State Rail Plan; d) railbanking (removal of rail tracks) results in expensive property litigation over easements, which will take years to resolve;

Conclusion: constructing the rail trail now, while saving rail transit for later is the best economic and environmental plan for our county.

— Grace Voss, Live Oak (Published in the Santa Cruz Sentinel, 11/28/18)

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