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SJ residents attend high speed rail hearings

April 7, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
The California High-Speed Rail Authority is holding the first of two Bay Area hearings today as it begins to finalize a revised Environmental Impact Report on the Bay Area to Central Valley section of the project. The public has packed an auditorium at the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Dept. in downtown San Jose this morning.

The revised EIR is the result of a lawsuit filed in 2008 by the Cities of Atherton and Menlo Park and by other parties over deficiencies they saw in the description of the project, a decision by Union Pacific railroad not to allow use of its right-of-way and land-use impact along the Peninsula.

Commission member Rod Diridon said that the high-speed rail body will listen but will not comment on the remarks made by the public today.

A second hearing is scheduled for this evening from 5:00 to 7:00 PM at the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors chambers at 70 W. Hedding St. in San Jose.

Representatives of labor unions have lined up to support the project, saying it will create thousands of jobs. The owner of a San Jose recreational vehicle park on Monterey Road was critical, saying that the right-of-way may cut off access to the RV park.

The 45-day public comment period ends on April 26. The authority is also accepting written comments. A number of groups on the Peninsula is organizing a letter and e-mail campaign to make sure its concerns are heard.

The authority's address is 925 L Street, Suite 1425, Sacramento, CA 95814.

Communications should be directed to Dan Leavitt.


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