June 4, 2009 By Wayne Hanson
"We are confident that California's system is well ahead of every other high-speed train project in the country and should be a leading candidate to receive stimulus funding." -- California High Speed Rail Authority Chair Quentin Kopp (pictured)
Vice President Joe Biden and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood met with eight governors and transportation officials from 15 states yesterday for a roundtable discussion on high-speed rail. In April President Obama released a high-speed rail strategic plan that identified $13 billion in federal funding for the effort. Later this month the administration will release more detailed guidance for the first $8 billion in federal grant applications. The first round of grants are expected to be awarded by late summer.
Today at 10 a.m. PDT the California High-Speed Rail Authority will webcast a meeting that will include the status of ARRA grant proposals and other matters. In a release on May 7, Authority Board Chair Quentin Kopp said "We are confident that California's system is well ahead of every other high-speed train project in the country and should be a leading candidate to receive stimulus funding. Ours is the only one with billions of dollars in voter-approved state funding committed to the project, with environmental clearances already in place and with construction elements already identified and ready to go."
All over the country, community leaders are looking to boost economic development through various initiatives. One key element in many of those initiatives is the use of information technology. When local governments build IT infrastructure, create e-government applications, assist high-tech startups or otherwise focus on technology, they create conditions that draw businesses to their communities and help retain skilled workers. This paper discusses and provides examples of these various ways local government can use technology to ultimately make a community more attractive to businesses, visitors and residents.