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Florida to get nearly a billion dollars more in high speed rail dollars

From Bill Nelson's office: "The U.S. Department of Transportation will award $800 million more to Florida to build a high-speed rail line slated to run from Tampa to Orlando.

"The announcement came today from Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood during a phone call with U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson.

"The additional $800 million comes on top of $1.25 billion President Obama announced in January the state would receive for the Tampa to Orlando stretch. The award means Florida only needs approximately $300 million more from the federal government in addition to the state’s share of funding to complete the $2.6 billion project. The remaining federal funds could come next year.

 "This is fantastic news for Florida," Nelson said. "This will ensure the state remains full speed ahead with high-speed rail construction. As I’ve said many times, high-speed rail will be a game changer for Florida’s economy, along the likes of the Interstate system and Disney.

DOT also notified Congress Monday of its intent to award an $8 million planning grant for the proposed high-speed rail line between Orlando and Miami.