TEXAS OFFICIALS VOW TO OPPOSE JAPANESE RAIL PROJECT
Jewett, Texas – Yesterday, thirty-three Texas officials sent a letter to The Honorable Kenichiro Sasae, Japan’s Ambassador to the United States, pledging to oppose the Dallas to Houston High-Speed Rail (“HSR”) Project proposed by Japanese rail interests. Elected and appointed officials representing the areas that will see irreversible harm to communities and property values, while having no benefit to citizens, including state legislators, county judges, county commissioners and sub-regional planning commission members, have all signed the letter.
Grimes County Judge Ben Leman said, “This letter sends a strong message that after considering all the information available, there is even more opposition to this HSR Project. Citizens clearly do not want this HSR to trample on the Texas constitutional protection of private property rights for the benefit of Japanese businesses. This Project is simply not viable in Texas, and the Japanese should look to other markets where there is local support.”
The letter reflects the overwhelming local opposition to the Project and follows a Legislative session in which the Texas Senate overwhelming supported a rider on the appropriations bill prohibiting any state support for HSR. Ultimately, the rider was removed only after the Texas Department of Transportation testified that they are not authorized to provide support for the HSR Project under current law. To date, no HSR Project has ever been completed and operated without significant public financing.
Leman went on to say, “As a County Judge whose county would be decimated by this unnecessary rail project, I will do everything within my power to protect the health, safety and welfare of our citizens.”
Texans Against High-Speed Rail represents a broad coalition of Texans who oppose the proposed HSR Project and garnered support for the letter to Ambassador Sasae. Kyle Workman, president of Texans Against High-Speed Rail, stated, “We appreciate the support of our officials in opposing this HSR project. This project is not just an issue of unwarranted use of eminent domain, but also one of eventual taxpayer subsidies that will impact all Texans. Our officials understand the full magnitude of the damage that can be done because of this, and I applaud their fortitude in standing with and for the citizens they represent on this issue.”
Please visit www.TexansAgainstHSR.com for more information about Texans Against High-Speed Rail, Inc.