Tim Skubick: High-speed train bid raising eyebrows - KMSP-TV

Tim Skubick: High-speed train bid raising eyebrows

Posted: Updated:
  • Tim SkubickMore>>

  • Why the independent voters may decide the new governor

    Why the independent voters may decide the new governor

    Thursday, August 28 2014 1:02 PM EDT2014-08-28 17:02:09 GMT
    The I's have it. Here we go with the popular wisdom schtick again. It says that independent voters hold the key to the outcome in the race for governor.
    The I's have it. Here we go with the popular wisdom schtick again. It says that independent voters hold the key to the outcome in the race for governor.
  • Back to school battle brewing in Lansing

    Back to school battle brewing in Lansing

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 9:47 PM EDT2014-08-28 01:47:57 GMT
    About 75% of the school children across the country are already in school but not in Michigan, where the tourism industry has convinced lawmakers to delay the opening of school until after Labor Day.
    About 75% of the school children across the country are already in school but not in Michigan, where the tourism industry has convinced lawmakers to delay the opening of school until after Labor Day.
  • House speaker candidates: Quit counting your chicks before they hatch

    House speaker candidates: Quit counting your chicks before they hatch

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 2:07 PM EDT2014-08-27 18:07:20 GMT
    There is a frantic game of "my list is bigger than your list" going on in this town as the two main combatants to become the next speaker of the Michigan House are trying to one-up each other.
    There is a frantic game of "my list is bigger than your list" going on in this town as the two main combatants to become the next speaker of the Michigan House are trying to one-up each other.
LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) - Who better to blow the whistle on an MDOT train contract than railroad devotee and former state senator Joe Schwarz.

Off the political radar for months, the former GOP politician is back in the game and playing with trains which he loves to do.

But he’s not in love with the way the state transportation department is handling the bid on high speed train service between Detroit and Chicago.

The state is poised to offer 110 mph service but it needs some rolling stock to get things going and Mr. Schwarz is critical of the RFP (Request for Proposal) the agency drafted.  He contends only one company could met the requirements and therefore only one bid was received.  Or as one PR guy alleges the contract was written for one firm.

Time out, Mr. S. demands.

“This deal is not a good deal,” he explains as he has asked the governor to restart the whole process so other companies can bid not just Talco which is in line to get the job.

He complains Talco has equipment that can not withstand Michigan’s grueling winters.  He contends their trains would require the regiggering of the railroad stations which handle Amtrak trains and another $30 million or so, not in the contract, would be needed to repair the trains.

Michigan P.R. guy John Truscott, hired by a Chicago firm that wants the job, suggests this whole thing is “smelly.”

Mr. Schwarz is not willing to go that far, but he says, “I don’t think they thought it through…the RFP was too narrow.”

This has been an expensive project with the feds kicking in a cool $338 million to upgrade the tracks between the two cities and Mr. Schwarz believes MDOT did a “superb” job on that, but not so much on the bid.

One-bid contracts do raise eyebrows in this town.  It doesn’t necessarily mean anything is wrong but in this case the former lawmaker wants to hit the re-boot button just to make sure and he's hoping the governor will push it.
  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • PoliticalMore>>

  • USDA seizes more than 1,200 illegal giant snails

    USDA seizes more than 1,200 illegal giant snails

    Monday, September 1 2014 7:40 AM EDT2014-09-01 11:40:37 GMT
    The giant African snail damages buildings, destroys crops and can cause meningitis in humans. But some people still want to collect, and even eat, the slimy invaders.
    The giant African snail damages buildings, destroys crops and can cause meningitis in humans. But some people still want to collect, and even eat, the slimy invaders.
  • Tax forms could pose challenge for HealthCare.gov

    Tax forms could pose challenge for HealthCare.gov

    Monday, September 1 2014 7:40 AM EDT2014-09-01 11:40:32 GMT
    If you got health coverage through President Barack Obama's law this year, you'll need a new form from your insurance exchange before you can file your tax return next spring.
    If you got health coverage through President Barack Obama's law this year, you'll need a new form from your insurance exchange before you can file your tax return next spring.
  • China anti-dissent playbook may fail in Hong Kong

    China anti-dissent playbook may fail in Hong Kong

    Monday, September 1 2014 7:11 AM EDT2014-09-01 11:11:19 GMT
    China's Communist leaders have pulled out their usual playbook to suppress resistance to their plans to tightly limit the first direct election of Hong Kong's leader, but are likely to find that the results...
    China's Communist leaders have pulled out their usual playbook to suppress resistance to their plans to tightly limit the first direct election of Hong Kong's leader, but are likely to find that the results are...
  • PoliticsPoliticsMore>>

  • Election info for 2014 Michigan primaries

    Election info for 2014 Michigan primaries

    Tuesday, August 5 2014 3:41 PM EDT2014-08-05 19:41:25 GMT
    Polls are open until 8 p.m.  Go inside this story to find out where you need to go to vote and get information on some of the top races and issues.
    Polls are open until 8 p.m.  Go inside this story to find out where you need to go to vote and get information on some of the top races and issues.
Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices