California is the top winner but Midwest states and Florida also scored big in states' fierce competition for $8 billion in federal grants to build high-speed-rail lines around the country.

The White House released a list of awards on Jan. 28, [see full list pdf attached] shortly before President Obama and Vice-President Biden were scheduled to make a formal announcement in Tampa.

The funding is part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, signed into law last February. The largest awards went for rail corridors or corridor segments. Smaller grants went for individual rail projects.

The U.S. Dept. of Transportation was flooded with applications for the rail funds, receiving $57 billion in proposals. That includes $50 billion in rail-corridor proposals submitted by 24 states; and $7 billion from 34 states for specific projects.

High-Speed Rail Grants
California $2.344 billion
Florida (Tampa-Orlando) $1.25 billion
Illinois (Chicago-St. Louis) $1.1 billion
Wisconsin (Milwaukee-Madison; Milwaukee airport) $822 million
Washington state (Seattle-Portland) $590 million
North Carolina (Raleigh-Charlotte; other projects) $545 million
Ohio (Cleveland-Columbus-Cincinnati) $400 million
Michigan (station renovations; other projects) $244 million
New York (NYC-Albany-Buffalo) $151 million
Northeast Corridor (R.I., N.J., Md., D.C.) $112 million
Virginia (Washington-Richmond) $75 million
Massachusetts (Springfield-East Northfield) $70 million
Vermont (Springfield, Mass.-St.Albans) $50 million
Connecticut (New Haven-Springfield, Mass.) $40 million
Maine (Brunswick-Portland) $35 million
Pennsylvania (Philadelphia-Harrisburg-Pittsburgh) $27 million