Va. not competing for high-speed rail funds

Virginia isn’t competing for a share of $2.4 billion in federal high-speed rail funds that Florida rejected.

The deadline to apply was Monday. Two dozen states, including Maryland, plus the District and Amtrak, have asked for a share of the funding.

Virginia plans to build a rail line between Richmond and Washington. State officials estimate that the project could be completed by 2021. To receive 100 percent federal stimulus funding, the project must be completed by 2017.

A Department of Rail and Public Transportation spokeswoman says the state would have to return the federal money if it didn’t meet the deadline.

The state also doesn’t have a 20 percent match needed to obtain money from another federal rail fund.

Virginia received about $45 million  last fall to devote to high-speed rail between Richmond and Washington.

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