"Scott said no to $2 billion in federal funding for high-speed rail between Orlando and Tampa," the editorial continued. "Before someone could say ARC tunnel, other states and Amtrak were lining up for the rejected funds."
The paper compared Scott's rejection of the high-speed rail funds to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's rejection of a commuter train tunnel between the Garden State and New York City.
But Christie did not turn down federal money that would have paid for most of the project, the editorial noted.
"The scrum of states was not dissimilar to what occurred after Governor Christie killed the ARC project last year," the newspaper wrote. "But Christie did not object to the $3 billion in federal funding allocated for ARC; he objected to New Jersey's being solely responsible for cost overruns that could reach into the billions of dollars.
"We supported Christie's decision to kill (Access to Region's Core) because the state's liabilities were too great," the editorial continued. "But we continue to support additional Hudson River tunnels. Rail service gets commuters out of cars, it moves freight and it puts less of a strain on our environment. We need more of it; $2 billion is a good start. And by the way, thanks, Governor Scott."
Scott has argued since rejecting the money for the proposed Tampa to Orlando railway in February that it would not have generated enough revenue to cover its operating costs, even with the federal government offering to pay 90 percent of its construction costs.
The New York Times ran a similar editorial Tuesday calling Scott's stance "thoughtless."
Another Northeast newspaper thanks Rick Scott for rail money
By Keith Laing - 05/11/11 08:54 PM EDT