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Brown’s dilemma: belt-tightening vs. high-speed rail spending

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

imageAides to Gov. Jerry Brown say he wrote today’s anticipated State of the State speech himself, and nobody’s leaking details. His biggest challenge, says the LA Times’ Anthony York, likely will be how to balance a heavy dose of austerity with his support for long-term infrastructure investments—notably California’s high-speed rail project. An excerpt:

Brown will have to defend such long-term investments even as he pegs the budget deficit at more than $9 billion and state unemployment remains high. His administration says that's not a contradiction.

"We built the Golden Gate Bridge and Central Valley Water Project during the Great Depression," his spokesman, Gil Duran, said Tuesday. "We're not trying to build the pyramids here. We're trying to build the water and transportation infrastructure we need to guide us through the 21st century."

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