Federal Railroad Administration

FRA Administrator Amit Bose

FRA Issues NOFO for Rail R&D Center of Excellence (UPDATED May 24)

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) on May 1 announced that $5 million is available to establish and maintain a Rail Research and Development Center of Excellence, which will “seek to improve the safety, performance, and sustainability of freight, intercity passenger, and commuter rail.”

The May 11 hearing, “Getting Back on Track: Exploring Rail Supply Chain Resilience and Challenges,” was led by Rep. Troy Nehls (R-Tex.), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials.

For House Rail Subcommittee, an Earful on Supply Chain Improvements

The rail industry’s role in overcoming supply chain challenges was the theme of a May 11 hearing of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials. It was part of what the T&I Committee called its continued “focus on ongoing supply chain challenges throughout the transportation sector, with the goal of identifying potential legislative solutions.” Among the five witnesses was American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association (ASLRRA) President Chuck Baker, who urged Congress members “to wield their pen with precision.”

The CTA Board on May 10 signed off on an ordinance that makes permanent recent part-time student and tiered-pricing pilot programs for the agency’s U-Pass Program. (CTA Photograph Courtesy of the Federal Transit Administration)

Transit Briefs: CTA, Metrolinx, Washington Union Station

Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) makes permanent two discounted fare-pass programs for students at participating high-education institutions, and releases its monthly service/operations “scorecard.” Also, Ricardo will provide safety assessment support for Metrolinx’s Ontario Line project in Toronto; and Washington, D.C.-area legislators seek federal funding and an expedited timeline for the multi-billion-dollar Washington Union Station Expansion Project.

FRA Issues FY22 Safety Enforcement Report

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has released its annual enforcement report, summarizing regulatory compliance inspections and audits conducted in the past fiscal year by FRA or state inspectors participating in FRA’s rail safety program, as well as the civil penalty enforcement actions arising from them.

“The Interstate Rail Compacts Program will facilitate multi-state partnerships to bring world-class passenger rail to more communities while supporting the long-term growth of America’s rail network,” FRA Administrator Amit Bose said.

FRA: Grant Applications Welcome for IRC Program

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) on May 8 reported that $5.8 million in competitive grant funding is available to help states advance intercity passenger rail through the new Interstate Rail Compacts (IRC) Program.

(BRC Photograph)

BRC Eyes C3RS Participation

The Belt Railway Company of Chicago (BRC) is seeking to join the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) voluntary confidential program (C3RS) that allows railroads and their employees to report close calls.