Cost to Taxpayers

BRIGHTLINE WANTS $350M TO BUILD FIVE RAIL STATIONS IN FLORIDA

BRIGHTLINE BEGAN TALKS WITH MIAMI-DADE COUNTY TO BUILD FIVE TRAINS PLATFORMS BETWEEN MIAMI AND AVENTURA ALONGSIDE THEIR HIGH-SPEED PASSENGER RAIL TO ORLANDO. This proposed arrangement would give Miami-Dade a new rail service—a service described like Tri-Rail—with stops at Wynwood, the Design District, El Portal, North Miami and the Biscayne Bay campus of Florida International University.

Read more here.

ALL ABOARD FLORIDA: BUY ME A RAILROAD

IF YOU CAN'T CONVINCE THE PUBLIC YOU'VE GOT A GOOD IDEA, convince the politicians and let them ram it down the citizens' throats. All it takes is money.

What's $3 Million Among Friends?
According to the TC Palm/Stuart News, as little as $3 million may be all that's necessary. That's how much AAF has spent on lobbyists in Tallahassee since 2011. But, they still need some 17 permits before they can move forward. So, the budget may have to go up.

RESIDENTS POOL $200K SO FLORIDA COUNTY CAN TAKE SUIT AGAINST VIRGIN TRAINS TO SUPREME COURT

THE ALLIANCE FOR SAFE TRAINS NONPROFIT GROUP HAS RAISED $200K IN PRIVATE MONEY. This money has been raised for Indian River County to pursue its case against the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Railroad Administration.

Indian River County had previously sued the U.S. DOT and FRA for wrongly issuing $2.7B in tax-exempt bonds, but both a federal court and a federal appeals court ruled the bonds were permissable. After $3M fighting the case, the Indian River County Commission voted in January to end further appeals.

BRIGHTLINE PASSENGER COUNTS, REVENUE REMAIN WELL BELOW COMPANY'S OWN PROJECTIONS

BRIGHTLINE/VIRGIN TRAINS USA REPORT FINDS THAT 2019 PASSENGER COUNT AND REVENUES WERE FAR BELOW ITS OWN FORECASTS. Passengers count barely broke one million, less than half the count originally projected, and revenue was $22 million, less than a fifth.

COURT REJECTS INDIAN RIVER COUNTY'S CHALLENGE AGAINST BRIGHTLINE/VIRGIN TRAINS USA

THE U.S. COURT OF APPEALS REJECTED INDIAN RIVER COUNTY'S CLAIMS OF IMPROPERLY APPROVED FUNDS FOR BRIGHTLINE/VIRGIN TRAINS USA FRIDAY.

However, this is not the end to the fight.

RIDERSHIP IS DOWN AND REVENUES ARE DOWN AND FLAT | VIRGIN TRAINS MONTHLY RIDERSHIP REVENUE REPORT

VIRGIN TRAINS USA RELEASED THEIR MONTHLY RIDERSHIP AND REVENUE REPORT FOR SEPTEMBER 2019 ON FRIDAY. Ridership is down, and revenues are down and flat.

Attached is a spreadsheet showing the quarterly ridership numbers since beginning service in the first quarter of 2018 and monthly ridership numbers for the past 12 months.

Below is a chart of the monthly revenue since March 2019. 

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION JOINS THE FIGHT AGAINST VIRGIN TRAINS USA/BRIGHTLINE

THE INDIAN RIVER NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION FILED AN AMICUS BRIEF SUPPORTING INDIAN RIVER COUNTY'S APPEAL OF PABs for the privately-owned high-speed passenger rail project Virgin Trains USA, formerly Brightline.

The association argued that the U.S. Department of Transportation "misinterpreted laws in order to qualify Brightline/Virgin Trains USA for the bond financing."

Appellate Judges David S. Tatel, Patricia A. Millett and Neomi J. Rao accepted the association's brief on June 3.

CALIFORNIA HIGH-SPEED RAIL PROJECT'S ESTIMATED COST RISES TO $79B, REPORT SAYS

ESTIMATED COSTS FOR THE CALIFORNIA HIGH-SPEED RAIL PROJECT INCREASED $2B TO A TOTAL OF $79B, according to a report by the High-Speed Rail Authority.

This project has been vehemently blasted by President Trump and other officials such as California Gov. Gavin Newsom comment that the full project "would cost too much and take too long."

The latest estimate for the high-speed rail project's completion is set for 2033.

Read more here.

NO MORE RAILROAD BOONDOGGLES!

WE DON'T NEED ANOTHER CALIFORNIA BOONDOGGLE, states Florida Alliance for Safe Trains Coordinator and Communications Director Susan Mehiel in a recent Sunshine State News article. Susan is referring to the now-defunct California high-speed rail project.

Tune in as Mehiel highlights the comparable deception and experimentation of the California and All Aboard Florida Virgin Trains' rail project, and how the Virgin Trains' project is going to fail like its predecessor.

TRAIN WRECK TIMES | THEY'RE AT IT AGAIN!

The Train Wreck Times by Susan Mehiel

They’re at it again! Earlier his week we received word from IRC that the Florida Development Finance Corporation is reviewing ANOTHER Private Activity Bond Request from Virgin Trains in addition to the $1.1 Billion they haven’t sold and the $600 million already sold. This approval would be for $950,000,000 in PAB’s and brings their allotment of taxpayer-subsidized funding to a grand total of $2.7 Billion.