PRESS RELEASE February 8, 2019

***MEDIA ALERT***MEDIA ALERT***MEDIA ALERT***

FOR THE RECORD: TEXAS CENTRAL “RAILWAY” DOES NOT HAVE
EMINENT DOMAIN AUTHORITY

WHAT: Leon County Landowners won their lawsuit against Texas Central “Railway” when Judge Deborah Evans ruled in their favor, declaring Texas Central “Railway” and Integrated Texas Logistics are not a railroad or interurban electric rail, meaning they do not have eminent domain authority.

WHO: Landowners Jim and Barbara Miles, Texans Against HSR Special Litigation Counsel Blake Beckham and Patrick McShan, Texans Against HSR Chairman Kyle Workman, and State Representative Ben Leman.

WHEN: MONDAY, FEBRUARY 11, 2019; 11:00 AM

WHERE: LEON COUNTY COURTHOUSE, 114 TX-75, CENTERVILLE

WHY: Texas Central “Railway’s” high-speed “rail” project is in serious jeopardy after Judge Deborah Evans clearly rules this project is not entitled to the rights and authorities of railroads or interurban electric rail, including eminent domain authority. This is just one example of the continued lies Texas Central “Railway” has promulgated across the Lone Star State. It is time that Texans finally hear the facts.

###

Download / Print

PRESS RELEASE January 30, 2019

LANDOWNER VICTORY: SECOND JUDGE DENIES TEXAS CENTRAL RAILWAY’S REQUEST TO BE DECLARED RAILROAD

Ellis County, Texas – Last Friday, Ellis County landowners Ronny Caldwell, William Getzendaner, and Darren Eagle celebrated another devastating blow to Texas Central Railway’s ill-advised high-speed rail project. In Ellis County – where Texas Central has sued more than ten landowners – Judge Jim Chapman denied Texas Central’s motion for a summary judgment order declaring that Texas Central qualifies as a railroad company under Texas law. As it stands, Texas Central still has no legal right to enter onto private property, nor does it have the right to force landowners to sell their property under the threat of eminent domain. In short, everything Texas Central has been telling landowners and the public for the past three years continues to be proven false in courtrooms up and down the proposed HSR corridor. Hopefully now, after losing in court again, Texas Central will finally realize that – in Texas – merely saying you are a railroad doesn’t mean that you are a railroad.

Landowner Ronny Caldwell said he is pleased with the ruling, especially since this is the second time he has been sued by the promoters of the proposed HSR. “Texas Central sued me back in 2016, then dropped the lawsuit after I hired an attorney and filed my papers. Then they sued me again in 2018. For years, I’ve been asking them to show me proof they are a railroad with eminent domain. They never could. And as it turns out, they couldn’t prove it in court either.”

Our legal team, led by Blake Beckham and Patrick McShan of The Beckham Group, worked countless hours alongside Ron Bunch, Derek Rollins, and Dan Gus, attorneys for William Getzendaner and Darren Eagle, in defense of these landowners’ property rights. Glenn Sodd, Jason Sodd and Jody McSpadden of the Dawson Sodd firm also contributed to this legal victory.

Patrick McShan said, “Once again, Texas Central bullied innocent landowners, sued them, threatened them with attorney’s fees, filed thousands of pages of papers, and then lost in court. It’s like a broken record. How many more of these cases does Texas Central and their army of lawyers have to lose before they get it through their heads that bringing a bunch of boxes of papers to the courthouse to show how much work you’ve done doesn’t mean you can violate someone’s private property rights? They’ve filed 43 cases in six counties and still can’t find a single court to sign off on their absurd legal arguments. And it’s not going to happen on our watch.”

Kyle Workman, president of Texans Against High-Speed Rail, said, “This ruling doesn’t surprise us, given that Texas Central has never produced any documentation of eminent domain authority. This company has been threatening and suing landowners, sending harassing letters, trespassing, and coercing “option contracts” with the unsubstantiated threat of eminent domain for years. With no eminent domain authority and no money or approval to construct, calling this project a pipe dream is putting it mildly. In truth, it’s just a bunch of consultants feeding at a Japanese-funded trough. It’s time for Texas Central to call it quits and move on.”

###

Download / Print

PRESS RELEASE September 12, 2018

DALLAS HOUSTON HSR TRUMPETING JAPANESE INTEREST BEARING LOAN…
STILL ONLY HAVE LESS THAN 2% OF NEEDED FUNDS

The Proposed Dallas Houston HSR Received a Notes Purchase Agreement from the Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corps for Transport & Urban Development (JOIN) for up to $300M

Jewett, Texas – Although the proposed Dallas Houston HSR project is trumpeting having received a maximum $300M loan backed by JOIN and the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), Texans Against High-Speed Rail is strongly refuting reports that characterize the loan as enough to “finish the project” or even “clear the way” for construction.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

With simple math and deductive reasoning, it’s clear this interest bearing loan, which if fully funded, would inject less than 2% of needed funds to construct the $18B-$20B project, is necessary for Japan to move it’s project along since the “Texas-based investments” have dried up and there aren’t enough domestic investors lining up to support the project into the next phase. Additionally, previous investors are nervous that their investment has been squandered on buying influence, propaganda, and a huge amount of wasteful spending.

Kyle Workman, president of Texans Against HSR, said of this most recent ploy, “This project has long wanted to be recognized as a Texas project in spite of all the evidence to the contrary. This loan is further proof that this is not a transportation solution for Texas but simply an attempt by the Japanese to export their antiquated 1950’s HSR technology. It is clear, the primary funding source for this project is the Japanese Government; no one domestically wants to lend money to this boondoggle. This latest news does nothing to change the facts…Texas Central is not a railroad, has no authority to condemn property, has only a fraction of the money necessary, has no approval(s) to construct, has no regulatory framework in which to operate their ride, and therefore cannot execute this business venture even if they had all the funding. Simply put, this is just another waste of Japanese taxpayer dollars, spent on lobbyists, consultants, and the harassment of hardworking Texans.”

Workman went on to say, “We are concerned that this is yet another unchecked attempt to mislead the public to believe this project is progressing forward and is inevitable. The company currently has no permission to operate, much less construct, this proposed HSR. Do not be misled.”

###

TAHSR Reply in Opposition to Petition to Reopen to the Surface Transportation Board

The TAHSR Reply in Opposition to Petition to Reopen to the Surface Transportation Board was submitted Thursday afternoon with over 1,900 verified statements from impacted citizens, as well as County Judges and State Senators and Representatives. Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association also included their opposition letter within our reply. Upon reading, you will find a very strong case for the STB not taking jurisdiction of this project, but also some clear indicators that should they choose to, they must give the required “hard look” at the finances of the project. We all can anticipate what that will reveal about this ill-conceived, ill-fated project.  Thank you for your support with this reply and we look forward to an STB decision in our favor once the STB nominees are approved by Congress.

Download / Print

Request For Extension

Prior to the government shutdown, our DC environmental law firm submitted this letter to the Federal Railroad Administration to request a ninety-day extension on the DEIS public comment period. The letter cites several flaws with the FRA’s administration of public comment period. The bottom line is this: A sixty-day public comment period to review a document that is 5,000 pages and took years to produce is unacceptable. Additionally, the government shutdown may affect the public comment period as well. We will update you on Monday when we know if the FRA is included in the shutdown.

We are continuing to work hard on your behalf. Please be sure to visit our Maps page for more information about how you can be involved in protecting your property and our great State during this DEIS comment period.

 

Pin It on Pinterest