NGFA praises STB rail proposal

The National Grain and Feed Association Monday praised the Surface Transportation Board for its proposal to amend its emergency service regulations.

“The NGFA urges the board to issue final rules in this proceeding as quickly as possible, given that the current rail service crisis in the United States and the substantial harm it is causing to NGFA members, other rail shippers, and the country’s economy as a whole, is showing no signs of abating anytime soon,” NGFA stated.

NGFA noted that STB issued the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on April 23 in which it proposes to:

1. Amend procedures for parties seeking a board order directing an incumbent carrier to take action to remedy a service emergency;

2. Indicate that the board may act on its own initiative to direct emergency service;

3. Modify the informational requirements for parties in emergency service proceedings;

4. Shorten the filing deadlines in emergency service proceedings and establish a timeframe for board decisions; and

5. Establish an accelerated process for certain acute service emergencies.

In comments submitted on May 23, NGFA said it is “very supportive” of STB’s proposed accelerated process to handle acute service emergencies.

“The consequences of railroads failing to deliver (grain and feed) supplies can be damaging, and potentially catastrophic, to the health of livestock populations,” NGFA noted.

“For this reason, the NGFA asks the board to clarify that the accelerated process it has proposed may be utilized when there is a clear and present threat to the health of livestock in addition to ‘food security.’”


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