The Senate by voice vote early Tuesday evening, Feb. 13, confirmed Ronald Batory as Federal Railroad Administrator, the nation’s rail safety watchdog agency.
Railway Age is now accepting entries for its annual Short Line/Regional Railroad of the Year competition. Short lines and regionals—and there are more than 600 of them—are invited to submit entries describing outstanding achievement in one or a combination of areas.
BNSF Railway Company saw another record year – nearly $7.7 billion –worth of investment from customers served by freight rail in 2017.
E. Hunter Harrison is gone. Railway Age’s twice-honored Railroader of the Year (2002 and 2015) died on Saturday, Dec. 16, in Wellington, Fla., from what CSX, the railroad that ultimately became the last stop in a long and distinguished career, attributed to “unexpectedly severe complications from a recent illness.” He was only 73.
For 54 weeks beginning in 2003, Roger Nober was the lone member of the Surface Transportation Board (STB), tormented that if he discussed cases with himself he would violate the Government in Sunshine Act, which prohibits a quorum from discussing anything of substance outside a properly noticed public meeting.
Senate confirmation of two new Republican members to the three-member National Mediation Board (NMB), and confirmation of a Democrat to a third NMB term, is anticipated in the next few weeks. The NMB will then be under Republican control for the first time since 2009.
Knee-jerks are part of business, one of the risks of doing business. As for knees, like most people, I have two of them, and as for jerks, I’ve been one, on occasion.
Confirmation of career-railroader Ronald L. Batory as Federal Railroad Administrator has been delayed by New Jersey and New York’s Senate delegation—Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Kirsten Gillibrand ((D-N.Y.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.)—over what they say is concern that the federal government will not provide funding for the Gateway Project.
CSX President and CEO E. Hunter Harrison, our two-time Railroader of the Year, reached out to me personally following publication of my blog, in this space, asking about the events at CSX since he took over the railroad. What I wrote was based solely on correspondence I received from various stakeholders. I promised Hunter that I would publish his response, unedited, and he could use as much space as needed:
It was an accessory to the jailing of three labor union presidents. It may encourage bad decision-making by rail managers. Its lottery-like jury awards seduce plaintiff attorneys. It can send an injured rail worker to the poor house. And it encourages adversarial relationships in the workplace.