HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has directed the Connecticut Department of Transportation to seek a share of $2.4 billion in federal money originally set aside for Florida’s high speed rail project.

The Obama administration said Fridays it’s taking back the money and inviting other states bid for it after Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott declined the funds.

The Florida project would have connected Tampa and Orlando with high-speed trains. But Scott said he didn’t want to obligate the state to pay for what could be expensive operating costs.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says he will make the funds available through competitive bidding.

Connecticut says it has committed $286 million of state funding and $161 million of federal money to modernize and improve 62 miles between New Haven and Springfield, Mass., for high-speed trains and commuter rail service.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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