LaHood to testify before House panel on rail

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"By zeroing out high-speed intercity passenger rail funding, we are being given the unique opportunity to refocus and reform the high-speed rail program on the rail lines that will produce the most benefit for the least amount of cost," he said.

The Obama administration had pushed to use $8 billion in money from the 2009 stimulus and more than $50 billion in appropriations over six years to build a railway network that Obama has said would eventually rival the interstate highway system.

A trio of Republican governors in Florida, Wisconsin and Ohio made headlines by rejecting offers from the Obama administration to build high-speed railways, but LaHood has defended the administrations plans

"Investing in a green, job creating high-speed rail network is less expensive and more practical than paying for all of the expansions to already congested highways and airports that would be necessary to accommodate the state’s projected population boom,” he said recently in a statement announcing a grant to California for rail.

Obama administration transportation officials have gotten around GOP efforts to cut future funding for high-speed rail by reallocating previously approved money that was rejected by the Republican governors.

The hearing with LaHood's testimony will take place Tuesday morning at 11 a.m.