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5/28/2002



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

STB to promote arbitration in railroad disputes


Surface Transportation Board May 22 announced various new steps to address arbitration in railroad disputes.
To remind parties of voluntary arbitration's availability and encourage arbitration where appropriate, the board plans to add a new requirement in complaint cases, under which a complainant must include a statement that arbitration was considered, but rejected, as a means of resolution.
The Board updated a roster of 29 available arbitrators with relevant experience. Any party interested in pursuing arbitration can obtain a copy of the roster by calling STB's Office of Congressional and Public Services at 202-565-1594.
The Board also noted that it had received comments from 21 parties — including governmental entities, railroads and rail groups, shippers and shipper groups — which revealed basic opinion differences as to whether or not legislative change would be appropriate to mandate arbitration, which types of disputes should be covered, what standards (if any) should apply, the scope of arbitral award reviews and other matters. STB plans to submit to Congress a summary of the submitted comments.


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