December 1, 2015

Survey finds Americans will use high-speed rail


Washington - If you build high-speed rail in America, they will come. According to a 2015 survey released by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), if high-speed rail were available today, two-thirds (63 percent) of Americans are likely to use high-speed trains and this jumps to nearly seventy (67) percent when respondents were informed of the costs [...]

RRB: unemployment, sickness benefits will decrease


Beginning October 1, 2015, the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) will reduce railroad unemployment and sickness insurance benefits by 6.8 percent, down from the current 7.3 percent reduction, due to federal budget cuts required by law. The adjusted reduction amount is based on revised projections of benefit claims and payments under the Railroad Unemployment Insurance [...]

DOT announces loan for CATS Blue Line extension


Washington – U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx today announced a $180 million Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan to the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) for construction of the LYNX Blue Line light rail extension. The TIFIA loan will support the expansion of the popular light rail system from Center City Charlotte to [...]

Dems. roll-out new pro-union bill

Union Yes; Union check yes

Days after the Republican presidential candidate Scott Walker announced his plan to get rid of the National Labor Relations Board, Democratic lawmakers are rolling out a plan to strengthen the government agency. The bill, introduced on Wednesday, will also serve as a litmus test to Democrats vying for union endorsements in the 2016 presidential election. The Wage [...]

DOT clears Richmond-to-Raleigh high-speed rail


Secretary urges continued cooperation to build project. Project would reduce trip time to just over 2 hours from current 3.5. Washington –  The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), the State of North Carolina and the Commonwealth of Virginia announced today that they have signed off on the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for [...]

FRA’s Feinberg testifies before Senate committee


At a nomination hearing September 17, 2015, before the Senate’s Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) Acting Administrator Sarah Feinberg testified on her qualifications as Administrator. Below is her speech. “Chairman Thune, Ranking Member Nelson, and Members of the Committee, thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today. [...]

Trust fund investment practices of the RRB


Beginning in 2002, a significant portion of the assets of the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) has been invested in private stocks, bonds, and other investments. Prior to the Railroad Retirement and Survivors’ Improvement Act of 2001, P.L. 107-90, surplus railroad retirement assets could only be invested in U.S. government securities— just as the Social Security [...]

TTD applauds movement on Hudson River rail tunnel


Washington — Edward Wytkind, president of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), issued the following statement on the progress to build a new Hudson River rail tunnel: “We are pleased that Governors Chris Christie (N.J.) and Andrew Cuomo (N.Y.) have advanced a joint plan — in a letter to President Obama — to build a desperately needed Hudson [...]

New study calls for multiple person train crews

Aii report_small

“Back on Track: Bringing Rail Safety to the 21st Century,” is a study conducted by the Alliance for Innovation and Infrastructure (Aii) on opportunities that are currently available to enhance rail transportation safety in the United States.  The study, which focuses largely on crude oil and hazardous shipments, gives real-world solutions that are intended to prevent [...]

House to probe rail security after Paris attack


A pair of House committees is planning to hold a hearing on U.S. rail security after a thwarted attack by a heavily armed gunman on a high-speed train in Europe. The House Homeland Security Committee’s subcommittees on intelligence and on transportation security and counterterrorism will meet Thursday, September 17, 2015, to discuss protections for U.S. [...]