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11/19/2003



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

BNSF, utility resolve 'discovery' differences in rate case, STB says



On Nov. 17, Surface Transportation Board announced that AEP Texas North Co. and Burlington Northern Santa Fe resolved all 10 outstanding discovery issues pertaining to a rate-complaint case during a private conference.

AEP Texas North alleges that BNSF's rates to move coal from the Powder River Basin to the utility's Oklaunion, Texas, generating station are unreasonably high and that the Class I possesses market dominance over the traffic.

"The discovery issues mutually resolved by the parties will save both parties time and expense in their litigation," said STB Chairman Roger Nober in a prepared statement.

Discovery conferences were mandated by a recent change to the board's rate-challenge case procedures involving the stand-alone cost methodology.


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