JUST IN: Congressmen call on feds to suspend Brightline bonds

Posted on May 22, 2018

By: Jennifer Sorentrue, Palm Beach Post

Days after Brightline completed the first leg of its passenger train service, the battle continued to grow over whether the company should be allowed to use federally approved tax-exempt bonds to finance its extension north to Orlando.

Brightline carried its first paying passengers between West Palm Beach and Miami on Saturday — marking the completion of the first phase of its private service, which is eventually planned to link the company’s three South Florida stations to the Orlando airport.

But before construction begins on the West Palm Beach-to-Orlando leg, Brightline needs to find a way to pay for the work.

Brightline in December won approval from the U.S. Department of Transportation to sell $1.15 billion in private activity bonds to help pay for the second phase, but some members of Congress have questioned whether the project meets the federal requirements to qualify for the tax-free financing…

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