Aug 17, 2011

Ten Reasons to Shut the Rail Runner Down Now

Paul Gessing
Ten Reasons to Shut the Rail Runner Down Now
At last, more than five years after it went into service, New Mexico taxpayers are being given a clearer picture of the Rail Runner’s finances. And, far from costing $400 million to build (as contemporary estimates led the public and legislators to believe), the latest information available indicates that the train will cost $843.3 million for infrastructure costs alone. These payments include two lump sum payments of $230 million per year in 2025 and 2027 which enabled then Governor Richardson to take credit for the project while sticking future elected leaders and taxpayers in with the bill. This “buy now,” pay later mentality is what got so many American homeowners into trouble and it is why the nation’s credit rating has been downgraded. The practice must be stopped. As if putting off the actual payment of infrastructure costs were not enough, the aforementioned tally of expenses does not include annual operating costs of $23.8 million, of which only about 14 percent are paid by fares. The following is a list of ten reasonsthat it makes sense for Gov. Martinez to do the current and future taxpayers of New Mexico a favor by shutting down the Rail Runner. Read full column here: New New Mexico

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