The Surface Transportation Board (STB) recently issued a decision clarifying that it will review the Tongue River Railroad Co. Inc.'s (TRRC) rail line construction proposal in its entirety, including a new environmental review of the project and the line's transportation merits.
The decision directs TRRC to file supplemental information related to the transportation merits, sets a new procedural schedule for the parties' submissions on the merits and requires TRRC to publish new newspaper notices consistent with the decision. The due date for comments in support of, or opposition to, TRRC's application is March 1, 2013, and the due date for TRRC's reply comments is April 15, 2013. A Federal Register notice of the STB's decision to accept or reject the application is anticipated on or about Jan. 9, 2013.
TRRC plans to construct and operate an 83-mile line between Miles City, Mont., and two ending points, one near the site of a previously planned Montco mine near Ashland, Mont., and the other at the proposed Otter Creek mine in an area east of Ashland. The line's owners include BNSF Railway Co. and Arch Coal Inc.
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