Regulatory

Mexican SAT Action Rather Ambiguous

In a July 19 press release, the Government of Mexico, through the Ministries of Energy, Finance and the Tax Administration Service (SAT), made public a list of active and suspended taxpayers on its Importers’ Registry, indicating that the suspensions were made due to several taxpayers apparently not being in full compliance with requirements under its Foreign Trade Rules. Among them were Kansas City Southern de México (KCSM) and Grupo Mexico’s Ferrosur rail freight subsidiary.

The CDOT’s plan includes 21 goals, 84 strategies and hundreds of benchmarks laid out in one- and three-year increments to “chart a course toward building safer streets; reprioritizing transportation projects to increase access to opportunities for residents in historically neglected neighborhoods; and working with CTA and regional transit agencies to expand public transportation access,” among other measures.

Transit Briefs: Chicago DOT, FTA

The Chicago (Ill.) Department of Transportation (CDOT) has released a strategic transportation plan that it’s calling “the nation’s first” urban plan developed in the wake of the pandemic, economic and racial justice crises of 2020. Also, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is now accepting applications for its Outstanding Achievement Award for Excellence in Environmental Document Preparation.

STB Chairman Oberman’s information request to the Class I chief executives is “designed to help the Board better understand the magnitude of container congestion, the purpose and effect of storage fees, and whether receivers are afforded relief when they lack the ability to facilitate the release of their containers.”

STB to Class I’s: Terminal Congestion, Demurrage Data, Please

Surface Transportation Board (STB) Chairman Martin J. Oberman has called on the CEOs of the seven North American Class I’s to provide information on the extent of congestion at key U.S. container terminals and on their policies and practices for assessing container demurrage fees, citing reports of “substantial charges being levied by the railroads for container storage at these terminals.”

‘Maybe So Sir, But Not Today’

I spent about a half-decade of my railway career working with several intermodal freight logistics luminaries: Marvin Manheim of Northwestern University’s Transportation Center, Penn State Professor of Logistics Kant Rao and Bryan Stone of Intercontainer, with contributions from Rick Hill and Dick Andino, pioneers of ship-to-rail intermodal at APL. These folks and others helped shape my view of moving containers along complex links and nodes among different modes and terminals.

In January, Metra’s Board of Directors approved a $1.8 billion purchase of up to 500 Alstom multilevels to replace aging bi-level gallery cars.

Supply Side: Alstom, Grignard Pure, Nexxiot

Alstom will receive a $3.4 million federal grant to expand its Hornell, N.Y., manufacturing facility. In addition, Grignard Pure LLC’s antimicrobial air treatment solution has received EPA approval for use in intrastate transit and transportation applications, and Nexxiot has teamed with TransRail Innovation Group (TRIG) to provide freight car monitoring.