Pringle Indicates Interest in Another Term Atop High-Speed Rail Board

Commuters headed to L.A. watch the arrival of a 7:10 a.m. Metrolink train in Buena Park. The station may be torn down to make room for high-speed rail.

Tracy Wood

Commuters headed to L.A. watch the arrival of a 7:10 a.m. Metrolink train in Buena Park. The station may be torn down to make room for high-speed rail.

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Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle, a fixture on the Orange County political scene for two decades, is termed out of his city council seat in December. However, he seems determined to stay in a position of influence.

His term as chairman of California’s High Speed Rail Authority ends in December as well. But in a recent interview he made a point of saying that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger doesn’t leave office until January, giving him time to reappoint Pringle to the nine-member board.

And, while not specifically saying he wants to keep the job, Pringle said: “I have every intention to make sure the (rail planning) process is done well and the very best outcome occur.”

Even so, his reappointment to the high-profile post might not be a slam dunk.

Buena Park Mayor Art Brown, who sits on the board of the Orange County Transportation Authority along with Pringle, is also eyeing the position. Both Pringle and Schwarzenegger are Republicans but Brown is a Democrat.

Brown sought the high-speed rail seat four years ago “and Pringle beat me out of it,” said Brown. Nonetheless, “I’ll throw my hat in no matter who’s governor, Republican or Democrat.”

The rail authority has come under fire in recent months for what even some of its supporters say are its poorly thought out plans and suspect ridership estimates.

— TRACY WOOD

 

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