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Federal funding for Central Corridor makes national news

News of the finalization of the federal Full Funding Grant Agreement for the Central Corridor light-rail transit line made business pages nationally, with Bloomberg Businessweek and other news outlets running Associated Press stories on the topic.

The AP report what we probably know: that the feds have committed $478 million, half of the cost of the 11-mile line, expected to be completed in 2014. The AP reports that the project has created 570 jobs, just a fraction of the 3,400 construction, management, engineering and operations jobs the Met Council claims will be created.

In a related local story, KSTP Eyewitness News reported on scuttled plans to build a temporary sidewalk in Downtown St. Paul for a public celebration of the funding agreement. The 2,000 square feet of concrete would have been pulled out days later and cost taxpayers "tens of thousands of dollars," reports KSTP's Jay Kolls.

Local, state and federal officials did join to sign a six-foot section of light rail in celebration.

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