• Amtrak New Gulf Coast Service - New Orleans to Mobile AL

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

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  by electricron
 
gokeefe wrote: Wed May 05, 2021 10:16 pm Land grants were given in return for original construction. The ongoing regulatory scheme which is protective of the railroads in various ways is for what happens right now. That's the trade off. The railroads get a good deal from their government regulator and in exchange for that they must provide access in the public interest to the government passenger service operator.
Grant access without financial loss. Amtrak, or some other government agencies, has to pay what it costs the railroads to provide that access. Of course there will be disagreements between all the parties involved on how much that costs is or will be.

Go to any open market and watch the seller and buyer haggle over the price. That is normal and should be expected. Compromise is the solution, via constant negotiations.
Amtrak seeking financial penalties for delayed trains certainly is not encouraging the freight railroad corporations desiring to have Amtrak trains on their tracks. In fact, it does just the opposite.

We could adopt the Mussolini answer for late arriving trains, but that was a step much too far. Even penalties of death did not solve the late trains, all it accomplish was republishing slower train schedules so no deaths would occur. Nothing happens in a vacuum, unattended reactions usually occur with every action.
  by eolesen
 
The same government that tolerates the Facebooks of the world? Yeah, don't think they'll be going after the railroads anytime soon.

Realistically, there aren't any barriers to new railroads, aside from the cost of construction and land acquisition...
  by Gilbert B Norman
 
gokeefe wrote: Wed May 05, 2021 10:16 pm Land grants were given in return for original construction. The ongoing regulatory scheme which is protective of the railroads in various ways is for what happens right now. That's the trade off. The railroads get a good deal from their government regulator and in exchange for that they must provide access in the public interest to the government passenger service operator.
Mr. O'Keefe, regarding your immediate appearing on the preceding page, am unaware of any Land Grant Act requiring the operation of passenger trains.

The ICC is gone, and had the roads said "thanks but no thanks" to Amtrak, as I'm sure many in the industry wished they had, there would not be a passenger train today operating on investor owned railroad rights of way. The existing regulation of rates and service today by the STB is to ensure non-discrimination, i.e. Farmer Alfalfa, you support "the right" political party, so you get this rate; Farmer Sorghum, you don't; so you get another rate.

The only reason a Class I operates an Amtrak train today is that they each hold a bilateral contract with Amtrak to do so. However, should Amtrak not proffer a train to operate, they don't run it without any legal remedies. For example, there were no "breach of contract" remedies sought by the roads from Amtrak when unilaterally Amtrak reduced the frequency of trains last year.

All told, if Amtrak announced "we're done" aside from it being "Oh happy day" collectively at Atlanta, Jax, Omaha, and Ft. Worth, no legal remedies could or would be sought.
  by Ridgefielder
 
Gilbert B Norman wrote: Thu May 06, 2021 7:46 am
gokeefe wrote: Wed May 05, 2021 10:16 pm Land grants were given in return for original construction. The ongoing regulatory scheme which is protective of the railroads in various ways is for what happens right now. That's the trade off. The railroads get a good deal from their government regulator and in exchange for that they must provide access in the public interest to the government passenger service operator.
Mr. O'Keefe, regarding your immediate appearing on the preceding page, am unaware of any Land Grant Act requiring the operation of passenger trains.
Mr. Norman: At the time the land grant acts were passed-- and I believe the last road financed with them was the Pacific Extension of your own Milwaukee Road, completed in 1909-- nobody would have imagined that anything other than a logging railroad or mine spur would be freight-only.

I think Mr. O'Keefe's general point, with which I agree, is that the railroads been granted certain rights, not available to other companies, by the public (as represented by the government) over the years-- the land grants being one example, eminent domain being another. In exchange for those rights they have certain responsibilities to the public, one of those being the facilitation of passenger transport.
  by Gilbert B Norman
 
Uh, Uh, Mr. Ridgefield; the MILW never got a dime for Lines West.

I still hold it should haven't been built in the first place. I only hope by those "much higher up" than me gave careful evaluation if it could have been used, hardly deserving to be operated by a "reorganized" MILW, but by someone such as the UP to provide balanced competition through the North Pacific region.

Stand by for contrary, yet well informed, words from Mr. Meyer. His career, from Rocky to Warren, was a "mite bit" longer than my eleven years.
  by Arborwayfan
 
To be clear, whatever I argue in the takings argument, I DON'T think that railroads have any kind of moral obligation to allow unlimited service, or even fast, frequent service. I only think my argument applies to minimal, old-style service that still mostly lets the railroad be a freight railroad -- in other words, to the least useful passenger train service. If we want something really worth having, we've got to pay for it at market rates.

(We could argue the WWII case around and around for years, Mr. Norman, maybe on a pleasant broad reach from Marblehead down to Bucksport :-D ; Martland is always up for a sail or a friendly debate. People with a lot more detailed information than me have done it. Did having lots of war traffic at discounted government rates hurt the RRs or help them, compared to a decade of not having nearly enough traffic? Were the RRs in better financial+condition of track, equipment, etc. after the war, or worse? Etc.)
  by RRspatch
 
Biden Administration backs Amtrak’s return to Gulf Coast

"The Biden Administration is officially tossing its support behind Amtrak’s return to the Gulf Coast.

The confirmation came in a letter from John Putnam, acting general counsel with the U.S. Department of Transportation to the U.S. Surface Transportation Board, charged with ruling whether Amtrak can restart a twice-daily service between Mobile and New Orleans. The service also calls for four stops in Mississippi – Pascagoula, Biloxi, Gulfport and Bay St. Louis.

Putnam, within a three-page letter submitted on Monday, urges the STB to “act expeditiously on Amtrak’s application” to restore the service to the Gulf Coast that was interrupted by Hurricane Katrina in 2005."

[..snip..]

Remainder can be read here -

https://www.al.com/news/mobile/2021/05/ ... cAbXznbwM0
  by west point
 
With the support direct from Biden NS & CSX best rethink their intransigence. Or the hammer may come down ? Of course sometimes lawyers want to get additional business.
  by Arlington
 
In the Amtrak era, was service ever "twice daily" in the past ? (to me that means 2 daily round trips, 4 train numbers) and to me sounds like a shift from the old LD model to the new Corridor model
  by Ridgefielder
 
Gilbert B Norman wrote: Thu May 06, 2021 2:49 pm Uh, Uh, Mr. Ridgefield; the MILW never got a dime for Lines West.
Mr. Norman- Perhaps they never got much, but I know for a fact they got land grants, since two of my direct ancestors bought land from them in Minnesota and South Dakota in the 1880's and '90s. :-D
  by eolesen
 
So, Harris-Biden and Amtrak want STB to declare an impase while both CSX and NS are asking to continue negotiating...

It's possible they'd move to appease Amtrak, but it's also possible that NS and CSX can appeal in Federal Court which will tie things up for years. This might actually be a case worth fighting, especially since Alabama doesn't want the interference with the port.

Sent from my SM-G981U using Tapatalk

  by eolesen
 

Ridgefielder wrote:
Gilbert B Norman wrote: Thu May 06, 2021 2:49 pm Uh, Uh, Mr. Ridgefield; the MILW never got a dime for Lines West.
Mr. Norman- Perhaps they never got much, but I know for a fact they got land grants, since two of my direct ancestors bought land from them in Minnesota and South Dakota in the 1880's and '90s. :-D
Uh, no. Maybe some of the original granger branches were built on land grants, but not the Pacific Coast Extension, which wasn't even started until 1905, well after your ancestors purchases.

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  by Ridgefielder
 
eolesen wrote: Tue May 11, 2021 3:39 pm
Ridgefielder wrote:
Gilbert B Norman wrote: Thu May 06, 2021 2:49 pm Uh, Uh, Mr. Ridgefield; the MILW never got a dime for Lines West.
Mr. Norman- Perhaps they never got much, but I know for a fact they got land grants, since two of my direct ancestors bought land from them in Minnesota and South Dakota in the 1880's and '90s. :-D
Uh, no. Maybe some of the original granger branches were built on land grants, but not the Pacific Coast Extension, which wasn't even started until 1905, well after your ancestors purchases.

Sent from my SM-G981U using Tapatalk
The property in question is along the route of what became the Milwaukee's main line west from the Twin Cities, in Kandiyohi County MN and (I think) Edmunds County SD. The MN property is still in the family and still ships to an elevator on the ex-MILW (now Twin Cities & Western) in Bird Island. The SD land was sold around the time of WWI.

Now that said I guess in the 1890's nobody envisioned this being a transcontinental main so your point stands.

Anyway this is all pretty far off track for a discussion of service on the SOU/L&N between New Orleans and Mobile!
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