Sacramento – Senator Andy Vidak’s (R-Hanford) measure – Senate Bill 940 – which could give previous owners of property once thought to be in the path of High-Speed Rail the opportunity to buy it back if the state is selling it, passed out of the Senate Elections and Constitutional Amendments Committee Tuesday with unanimous support.
The High-Speed Rail Authority (HSRA) says it needs nearly 1,300 individual properties to complete the 120-mile route from Madera to Bakersfield. The route has seen many changes, and if the project is never completed, it’s possible that the state may own property it no longer needs.
Current law allows the Authority to sell land it deems unnecessary, but previous landowners aren’t notified of the sale.
Vidak’s Senate Bill 940 requires the High-Speed Rail Authority to notify previous property owners when it plans to sell unneeded property and requires the Authority wait 30 days after the notification before selling the property.
“It’s the right thing to do to let folks get back what belonged to them if they want to,” said Vidak. “In many cases, land, businesses and homes in the path of High-Speed Rail have been in families for generations.”