|Budget Issue:||The budget requests $190,000 for two right-of-way agent positions to plan, organize, and direct all right-of-way activities.|
|Program:||High-Speed Rail Authority - Right-of-Way Agents|
|Finding or Recommendation:||We withhold recommendation pending the authority’s release of a right-of-way acquisition plan sometime in February 2010.|
The authority has procured a contractor, with experience in right-of-way assessment and the state process for land acquisition, to develop a plan for the authority to proceed with the purchase of rights of way for the proposed high speed rail system. This plan is to help establish the authority’s process for acquiring property as well to define roles and responsibilities of the various entities involved in the acquisition of property needed for the rail system. Specifically, the plan would recommend whether to assign acquisition responsibilities to state staff, or alternatively, to private contractors to act as the state’s real estate agents, or some combination of both. Without this plan, the authority’s staffing needs for this function are unknown. Therefore, we withhold recommendation on this request until the plan has been completed sometime in February.