Lack of Transparency

VIRGIN TRAINS USA SIDETRACKS PLANNED $538 MILLION IPO

As background, Indian River County has appealed Federal Judge Cooper’s decision in favor of Brightline at a cost of $400,000 to IRC. One of their claims is that the PABs are designed as highway bonds and not rail bonds. If the Judge’s decision is overturned and the $1.7B Private Activity Bonds (PAB) have been sold, these bonds will be recalled.  

If they have not been purchased, bondholders will have to factor in the possibility that these bonds may be recalled at a future date.

BRIGHTLINE GOES VIRGINAL. WHAT PRICE VIRGINITY?

NEW DEVELOPMENTS ARE BEING MADE AFTER BRIGHTLINE BEING PURCHASED BY VIRGIN LAST MONTH, reports David Peter Alan of the Railway Age. These developments include an IPO for stock and a possible additional station near Disney World.

TRAIN WRECK TIMES - CELEBRATE GREAT NEWS

WE ARE CELEBRATING GREAT NEWS. Our Call to Action sent out Nov. 18 to attend a special meeting of the IRC commissioners on Nov. 20th turned out to be critical. At 7:45 p.m. the night before the meeting, we received notice that the meeting would focus on a deal negotiated between Martin and Indian River Counties and CARE with the representatives of AAF/Virgin. The attorneys for the respective counties circulated the deal to their commissioners.

THIS RAPID LINE WAS PRIVATELY FINANCED AND BUILT. CAN THE STATE REGULATE IT?

SEN. DEBBIE MAYFIELD PLANS TO PUSH FOR MORE STATE OVERSIGHT OF ALL ABOARD FLORIDA’S BRIGHTLINE HIGH-SPEED PASSENGER RAIL SERVICE. This bill was founded by troubling issues found from reading an Oct. 31 report from the Legislature’s Office of Program Poly Analysis and Government Accountability.

GOVENOR SCOTT'S HUGE, HIDDEN STAKE IN CHINESE COMPANY SUPPLYING MAKER OF BRIGHTLINE TRAINS

THE SCOTTS HAD AN GARGANTUAN FINANCIAL STAKE IN A CHINESE RAILWAY COMPANY THAT SO HAPPENS TO SUPPLY COMPONENTS TO THE U.S. CONTRACTOR BUILDING BRIGHTLINE, a high-speed passenger rail project that Gov. Rick Scott strongly backed.

The company Quingdao Victall Railway Group Co. Ltd. became an interest in October 2014 when it partnered with Scott's company, Continental Structural Plastics (CSP) to form a 50-50 joint venture. In January of 2017, CSP was sold to the Japanese conglomerate Teijin for $825 million.

CARE FL - RICK SCOTT KILLS ONE TRAIN FOR ANOTHER - A MUST-READ ARTICLE REGARDING ALL ABOARD FLORIDA

Dear Loblolly members,
below is an interesting, must-read article taken from the Miami Herald and Tamps Bay Times regarding All Aboard Florida.  

TALLAHASSEE

As one of his first acts in office in 2011, Gov. Rick Scott canceled a $2.4 billion federally funded and shovel-ready bullet train from Orlando to Tampa because it carried “an extremely high risk of overspending taxpayer dollars with no guarantee of economic growth.’’

RICK SCOTT KILLED A HIGH-SPEED RAIL PLAN. THEN ALL ABOARD ROLLED UP AND HE BOUGHT IT.

ONE OF GOVERNOR RICK SCOTT'S FIRST ACTS WAS THE CANCELATION OF A $2.4 BILLION FEDERALLY FUNDED HIGH-SPEED RAIL PROJECT, saying it was "an extremely high risk of overspending taxpayer dollars with no guarantee of economic growth." Apparently he "switched gears," as he and his wife last year invested at least $3 million in a credit fund for All Aboard Florida's parent company, Fortress Investment Group, according to recently disclosed financial documents.

TRI-RAIL AND BRIGHTLINE RISK MISSING DEADLINE FOR TRAIN SAFETY SYSTEM

BRIGHTLINE AND TRI-RAIL ARE AT RISK OF MISSING A MANDATED DEADLINE OF INSTALLING A CRITICAL SAFETY SYSTEM ON THEIR TRAINS AGAIN. Both companies are supposed to have the technology "positive train control" - which overrides humans to correct their errors before trains can derail, collide with other trains or work crews, or steer onto the wrong tracks - by Dec. 31, 2018.

Originally, Congress gave the railroads until 2015 to install this valuable technology, but the railroads protested and the deadline was moved to the end of 2018.

BRIGHTLINE BENEFITS FROM MALODOROUS STATE GOVERNMENT | OUR VIEW

IF YOU THINK BRIGHTLINE'S LATEST DEAL SMELLS BAD, YOU'RE CORRECT, The Treasure Coast Newspapers Editorial Board states regarding the high-speed passenger rail's latest deal in which they received approval from the Orange County Commission - which converts more than 100 acres to wetlands along the Beachline Expressway for their Miami to Orlando extension - thanks to John Miklos.