Railroads

News & Analysis as of

Week in Review - March 2015 #3

Friday marked the first committee deadline and thus a flurry of activity at the Capitol to act favorably on bills in their respective policy committees. MNsure - When Governor Mark Dayton’s supplemental budget...more

Supreme Court Update: NC Board Of Dental Examiners V. FTX (13-534), Direct Marketing Ass'n V. Brohl (13-1032), And Alabama Dep't...

We're bringing you up to speed with summaries of the Court's decisions in NC Board of Dental Examiners v. FTX (13-534), regarding the scope of state action immunity from federal antitrust law; Direct Marketing Ass'n v. Brohl...more

Anticipating PHMSA's Crude by Rail Rule

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration's much-anticipated crude by rail rule will address over 3,000 comments, spanning a wide range of public opinion on crude by rail safety. PHMSA must address vast...more

Supreme Court Decides Dept. of Transportation et al v. Ass'n of Am. Railroads

On March 9, 2015, the Supreme Court decided Dept. of Transportation et al v. Ass’n of Am. Railroads No. 13-1080, holding that, based on the federal government’s control and supervision of Amtrak, Amtrak may act as a...more

Alabama Department of Revenue Gets a Second Chance to Justify Diesel Fuel Sales Tax Against Rail Carriers

In the State of Alabama’s and CSX Transportation’s second trip to the U.S. Supreme Court, the Court held in a 7-2 decision on March 4 that Alabama’s sales tax on diesel fuel purchased and used by rail carriers—where motor and...more

Supreme Court Decides Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation, Inc.

On March 4, 2015, the Supreme Court decided Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation, Inc., No. 13-553, holding that a rail carrier can prove discrimination under the Railroad Revitalization and Regulation Reform...more

A Novel Cause of Action Coming Down the Track and Other Railway Legislation Changes

Late last month, the federal government introduced Bill C-52, which, if enacted, will amend both the Canada Transportation Act (CTA) and the Railway Safety Act (RSA). The federal government also proposed new Railway Safety...more

Regulators Respond to Recent Crude by Rail Incidents: Ten Considerations Before Shipping Crude by Rail to Mitigate Exposure

Last week’s derailments in West Virginia and Canada bring more scrutiny to the already heavily scrutinized shipment of crude by rail given the real-time media coverage of the incidents. Last Friday, Oregon Senator Ron...more

BakerHostetler's Shale Oil and Gas Industry 2014 Year in Review and 2015 Look Forward

Once again, shale oil and gas production dominated energy headlines in 2014, with a number of key economic, political, and legal developments making news across the country. Bolstered by technologies like hydraulic...more

U.S. Supreme Court Update, March/April 2015

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases involving state taxation on consecutive days in December. On 12/8/14, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Direct Marketing Ass'n v. Brohl, where the Court has...more

Week in Review - February 2015 #2

Pay Raises - Gov. Mark Dayton and the Republican House are sparring over state agency commissioner pay. Last month, Dayton increased pay for 26 commissioners and department heads by a total of $802,000. Republicans say...more

Fifth Circuit Un-Vacates Arbitration Award, Offering Guidance to District Courts

“When an arbitration goes an opponent’s way on the basis of questionable contract interpretation, parties often seek refuge in [Section] 10(a)(4).  But the Supreme Court has made clear that district courts’ review of...more

STB Issues Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Announcing Weekly Reporting on Rail Service Issues

The Surface Transportation Board (STB) has published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in which the Board seeks comments on the establishment of regulations which will require all Class I railroads and the Chicago...more

"2014-15 Supreme Court Highlights"

Approaching the midpoint of its 2014-15 term, the Supreme Court has added to its docket several cases with potentially wide-reaching implications for a range of important policy and business issues. The Court accepted for...more

California Supreme Court To Resolve Appellate Court Split on Federal Preemption in Railroad Regulation

On December 10, 2014, the California Supreme Court granted petition for review in Friends of the Eel River v. North Coast Railroad Authority to resolve a split between the First and Third District Courts of Appeal. (230...more

Minnesota Weekly Legislative Update: 01/2015

The Minnesota Legislature had a short week after Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. This week was one of transition as committees had fewer introductory hearings and more testimony on bills that are being considered. ...more

Third Circuit Finds that the Federal Railroad Safety Act's Anti-Retaliation Provision Does Not Cover Employees Treated for...

In a case of first impression with far-reaching implications for the railroad industry, the Third Circuit has held that the provision of the Federal Railroad Safety Act (FRSA) prohibiting discipline of employees for...more

Legal Minute: Cybersecurity Reporting Requirements for Government Contractors [Video]

Government Contracts Partner Mary Beth Bosco explains the new cyber breach reporting requirements for defense contractors based on the recent passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015. The NDAA...more

OSHA Hands Down Record Award Under Federal Railroad Safety Act

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) gave a MTA Metro-North railroad employee a record award under the Federal Railroad Safety Act after they suffered an injury in 2011. The $250,000 in punitive damages...more

State Regulators Are On Track To Improve Oil Train Safety

Our November 13 post noted that most of the crude oil from the Bakken Formation in North Dakota is shipped to ports and refineries throughout the United States by rail, typically in unit trains with one hundred cars or more....more

Falling Oil Prices Ignite Concern Over Bakken Crude

Happy Days Are Here Again? Gasoline prices have been falling steadily for months. Now a gallon may be purchased for substantially less than three dollars in many regions of the country. ...more

Crude-by-Rail Update: Municipalities in the Bakken Push Back Against Increasing Train Traffic

Throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, towns in the western United States grew and thrived around the railroad. In fact, the railroad tracks often became a central geographic feature within towns, birthing the...more

California Supreme Court Poised To Decide Key CEQA Questions: The Court’s Lineup For 2015

The California Supreme Court’s involvement in CEQA cases has been relatively limited since he statute’s enactment in 1970, with the court taking  review of at most one or two appellate court decisions a year.  The last two...more

Tennessee Tax Year in Review

Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP’s State and Local Tax Team would like to share our year-end review—revisiting some interesting Tennessee tax developments for 2014 and announcing our annual “Tennessee Tax Issue of the Year.”...more

“Making CEQA A Federal Case? Recent Actions of California’s Supreme Court and the Federal Surface Transportation Board Set Up A...

Controversy has dogged the California high speed rail project since before its inception with the 2008 passage of Proposition 1A, the bond measure providing the project’s initial funding. The controversy has not abated in the...more

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