Senate Continues To Scrutinize Talgo Trains

July 17, 2014

LANSING, MICHIGAN — From MIRS, 16 July 2014:

Sen. John Pappageorge (R-Troy) told the Department of Transportation (MDOT) today to hold off on buying any new railcars until after his Senate MDOT Appropriations Subcommittee get[s] a look at the bidding process.

“I’m inclined to say don’t go anywhere with that (Request for Proposal) RFP until we get done here,” Pappageorge told MDOT Rail Director Tim Hoeffner.

After a hearing this morning, Pappageorge said that either full appropriations or the transportation subcommittee would again be discussing the bids in August…

NOTE: In June, MIRS reported on the previous hearing of Pappageorge’s subcommittee (See “More Question MDOT’s Interest In Wisconsin Trains,” 6 June 2014), in which former U.S. Rep. Joe Schwarz questioned the Talgo purchase. Pappageorge said he held this hearing at the request of the full Appropriations Committee. Continuing:

…Schwarz was on hand at today’s hearing, saying, “The RFP was way too narrow.”

That concern has also been voiced by Jim Coston of Corridor Capital LLC, a company that attended a pre-bid meeting, but did not bid because it perceived the RFP as having been written for the Talgo trains…

Hoeffner today again explained that the RFP was on a tight timetable because the department was looking to put the trains online in 2015…

Pappageorge said his inclination was to get this done right, not quickly…

Read the full story on MIRS. (Paid or free trial subscription required)

Note: The continued hearing date for the Senate Appropriations Transportation Subcommittee is Wednesday, 13 August 2014.

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