Wis. railroad wants $160K for high-speed rail work

Gov. Walker nixed high-speed rail line when he took office

A Milwaukee-based railroad says the state owes it $160,000 for work it performed on a high-speed line Republican Gov. Scott Walker nixed when he took office.

Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Vice President of Finance Timothy Karp told the state claims board Friday the railroad began negotiating with Amtrak in 2010 about sharing tracks for a high-speed passenger line between Madison and Milwaukee.

Karp says the railroad began the work without a contract because Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle’s administration wanted to get moving as quickly as possible with the November 2010 election looming. He says the state offered repeated verbal promises to reimburse the railroad, though.

Walker won the governor’s office in the election and killed the project. Karp says the railroad is still looking for its money.