EDITOR OF REDSTATE
BREAKING: Rick Scott Wins
The Florida Supreme Court has ruled that Governor Rick Scott can reject high-speed rail funds from the federal government.
Scott had decided to decline high-speed rail funds for a Tampa to Orlando line and two state legislators sued him.
The Florida Supreme Court had put the bipartisan lawsuit filed Tuesday on a fast track because LaHood had given Scott until Friday to accept the money.
Scott, an outspoken critic of the stimulus program, has said he believes the rail project would put Florida taxpayers on the hook for billions in cost overruns and operating subsidies.
State Sens. Arthenia Joyner, a Tampa Democrat, and Thad Altman, a Viera Republican, disagreed and sued Scott.
They said overruns and subsidies would be the responsibility of the private company contracted to build and operate the system and argued state law gave Scott no choice but to accept the money.
As soon as the court’s decision was announced, Scott telephoned U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray Lahood and said Florida was formally rejecting the funds.