STB Announces Hearing to Review Regulations

WASHINGTON — The Surface Transportation Board announced a public hearing for Dec. 9 to review existing exemptions from railroad-transportation regulations for certain commodities, boxcar and intermodal freight.

Beginning in 1979, the STB’s predecessor agency, the Interstate Commerce Commission, removed the federal protections requiring reasonable service and rates from certain classes of freight, including certain commodities, boxcar movements and intermodal services.

“At the time, most of those shippers supported the exemptions,” said STB Chairman Daniel R. Elliott III. “But some of those same shippers now say that these exemptions have outlived their usefulness. This hearing is a good way to explore whether those exemptions still make good policy sense.”

The hearing will begin at 9:30 a.m. in the hearing room of the Board’s headquarters located at 395 E Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. Parties wishing to speak at the hearing should file with the Board a notice of intent to participate, including the topic and amount of time requested, by Nov. 30, 2010. Written testimony will also be accepted until Nov. 30.