Thursday, May 10, 2012

OMB Approves FRA Final Rule on PTC Amendments

Yesterday the Office of Management and Budget announced that it had approved the final rule from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) for amendments to the positive train control (PTC) implementation regulations. The approval was made ‘consistent with change’, suggesting that OMB had some relatively minor corrections that it wished to see made in the final rule.

FRA is moving ahead fairly quickly with this rule with the comment period on the NPRM ending just last October. I would expect to see this rule published in the Federal Register within the next week or so.

Readers might recall that I expressed some concerns about the effects of this on toxic inhalation hazard (TIH) chemical re-routing decisions and the potential for increasing the number of rate disputes concerning TIH chemicals filed with the Surface Transportation Board. It will be interesting to see if/how the FRA dealt with these issues in the upcoming rule.

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