Proponents of California's $98.5 billion high-speed rail project, freshly battered by critics and teetering before the Legislature, are preparing a series of eleventh-hour changes to reduce the project's cost and improve its chance of approval.
The effort is materializing just weeks before the Brown administration is expected to seek funding to start construction in the Central Valley.
The changes include accelerating construction to reduce inflationary costs and funding regional rail improvements in and around Los Angeles and the Bay Area. Those areas are represented by influential lawmakers whom the California High-Speed Rail Authority is trying to appease.
Time is short, however, and some lawmakers are losing patience.