Rail project needs oversight

September 9, 2013 

Your Sept. 4 editorial observes that the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge has opened “years late, billions over budget, riddled with construction errors.”

It calls for “vigorous and constant independent oversight” and “transparency” on future megaprojects.

How about starting with California High-Speed Rail?

On Aug. 22, Democrats on the Joint Legislative Audit Committee rejected a proposal from Assemblymen Frank Bigelow and Jim Patterson for an independent state audit of how the rail authority is getting land from private property owners. On Aug. 8, the Democrat majority on the committee rejected a proposal to audit the administration of the project.

On Aug. 16, a state judge ruled that the business plan for the High-Speed Rail Authority failed to comply with state law.

So far, so bad. Wait a year or two, and the Bee will be calling again for vigorous and constant independent oversight and transparency on another megaproject.

CHARLIE MENGHETTI

Modesto

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