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Riding the rail


The much-debated light-rail project stayed on track this week as the Orlando City Council and the Orange County Commission both passed the necessary resolutions to angle for federal funding.

The Sierra Club's Central Florida chapter endorsed the proposed plan -- whose first stage would link downtown and International Drive -- and urged the County Commission to approve it. "Failure to do this will likely set Orlando area transportation needs backward for several decades," the environmental group said.

The county commission's 5-2 vote was the last meeting for outgoing Chairman Linda Chapin. Incoming Chairman Mel Martinez tried to distance himself from the rail plan during the campaign but, unlike opponent John Ostalkiewicz, would not rule it out.

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