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Lingle defends financial review of rail project

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Gov. Linda Lingle is defending the financial review she has ordered on Honolulu’s proposed commuter rail project.

Lingle released a statement Monday saying she has a legal responsibility to ensure that the project’s environmental impact report complies with state law.

She says she also has a fiduciary responsibility to determine what it could cost taxpayers.

A group backing the project called Go Rail Go, labor unions and acting Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell held a press conference at the state Capitol this morning. The group contends Lingle is wasting $300,000 in state funds to conduct the financial analysis. It also contends the report will delay the start of construction, which would employ hundreds of Hawaii workers.

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