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10/13/2005



Rail News: Amtrak

Amtrak board approves resolution to create Northeast Corridor subsidiary



Amtrak’s board of directors recently approved a plan that will change the face of the national passenger railroad. Amtrak managers will create a Northeast Corridor (NEC) subsidiary that will assume ownership and management of NEC infrastructure, according to the National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP).

The creation of the subsidiary will help facilitate "future capital investment, financing, development, oversight and operation of the NEC infrastructure," according to the resolution.

The board’s action is inconsistent with comments members made in April, when they released Amtrak’s strategic reform initiatives and fiscal-year 2006 grant request, NARP officials saids. Members said the board and management had explored ways to transition the NEC operations to a separate entity, but determined the costs, complexities and risks of such a split would outweigh the benefits. In addition, members believed control over rail operations and infrastructure management should remain unified for safety and efficiency reasons.

Amtrak must identify necessary actions to transfer the NEC subsidiary title to all assets comprising the NEC infrastructure and prepare transfer documents by the January 2006 board meeting, according to the resolution.


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