This is from the Worcester (Mass.) Telegram and Gazette
WORCESTER — CSX Corp. plans to more than double the size of its freight yard on Franklin Street and make the city its new freight hub for New England.
The $100 million project is part of a private-public partnership between the state and CSX to reposition its freight operations in Massachusetts, so the rail line between Worcester and Boston can be opened up to more commuter trains, with a goal of eventually reaching 20 to 25 commuter trains per day, according to Lt. Gov. Timothy P. Murray.
Well, let’s check out the terms of Massachusetts’ version of the CSX/Sunrail deal and consider the difference between a how a state governed by liberals and a state governed by conservatives deals with corporations and the public interest.
With the Florida CSX deal, the state is paying CSX about $600-$700 million overall in cash and Florida freight system improvements for ownership of 61 miles of lines through the Orlando area. (It’s about $450 million if you don’t count the money for overpass construction in north central Florida, which I suppose one could say isn’t directly for CSX’s benefit, even though it is.) Remember, that money includes $23 million for “relocation” of the Taft rail yard to the Winter Haven rail yard.
Jamey L. Tesler, deputy secretary for the state Department of Transportation, said no state or city funding will be used to finance the [Worcester] expansion project. He said CSX will pay the entire bill for the project from money it will receive from the state for the purchase of the property rights of the Boston-to-Worcester rail line and the New Bedford-to-Fall River line.
That’s no money as in no money. As in no taxpayer sops to whatever spoiled, bullying inheritance baby’s buddies assemble land near the hub in Worcester.
Well, surely CSX stuck it to those silly leftists in the deal for the Worcester-to-Boston tracks. I bet they way overpaid compared to what Jeb and Marco and John Mica were able to negotiate. Well, maybe not so much. Massachusetts bought 23 miles of rail line between Framingham and Worcester and some additional Boston-area trackage I can’t find mileage for. Mass also paid for some overpass improvements, just like Florida did. However, the total Massachusetts package came to $100 million. Absolute worst case for Massachusetts, that’s $4.3 million per mile, and it certainly would be less than that if I knew the Boston mileage. And Massachusetts citizens sound like they get a truly useful extension of one of America’s best established rail/transit systems.
By contrast, our fair state paid about $10.6 million per mile to purchase track for a startup service projected to carry 3,000 people per day. That’s more than twice what those free spending Kennedy-lovers paid for a much better product.
So here’s my question to Bob O’Malley, the CSX flack who on occasion reads and comments on Lakeland Local: Do you guys give seminars? Because I would love to learn your negotiating technique. And, when you hear Marco Rubio – speaker of the Florida House and major CSX supporter when all of this went down – splatter on about conservatism and spending and who does and does not hug Obama’s stimulus package, do you cackle to yourself?
At least CSX was honest about the job picture in Worcester.
He said the project is expected to create 370 construction jobs, and 50 jobs once the freight terminal is completed, which is projected to be in September 2012.
Get used to those types of numbers here, Haveners.