Yesterday, the U.S. Transportation Department released a statement saying that it would cancel $929 million in federal funds supplied by the Obama administration for a high-speed railway project in California.
The U.S. agency is currently “exploring every legal option” in order to get a return on the $2.5 billion already received by the state, as reported by Reuters. The initial goal was to complete the $77.3 billion 520-mile (826.8 km) project by the year 2033.
This railway system would have ultimately allowed trains to travel at speeds of up to 220 mph (354 km/h), connecting Los Angeles to San Francisco.
According to California Governor Gavin Newsom, his state will have to scale the project back dramatically, although a smaller section of the line will still be completed.
While the Transportation Department’s Federal Railroad Administration claims it wanted to halt funding not only because of a general lack of progress, but also due to the governor’s motion to scale things back, Newsom went on to link the Trump administration’s decision to California leading 15 other states in challenging what he considers to be “the President’s farcical ‘national emergency'”.
“This is California’s money, and we are going to fight for it,” said Newsom with regards to the railroad funds.
Furthermore, a total of 16 U.S. states sued Trump as well as top members of his administration, arguing that the president’s emergency declaration would cause them to lose millions of dollars in federal funding.
A scanned copy of the notice of intent to terminate funding on the project can be viewed here.