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Union Pacific Railroad on June 5 began upgrading a Wisconsin line between Rusk and near Eau Claire, and between Black River Falls and Wyeville.To be completed by August's end, the $11 million project calls for replacing 42 miles of rail, renewing surfaces at 41 grade crossings and replacing 14 switches.The trackwork is one of nearly 1,500 maintenance-of-way projects UP plans to complete this year across its 32,000-mile network to improve operating efficiency, reduce motorists' wait times at crossings and enhance safety. In May, the Class I increased its 2014 capital spending budget by $150 million to $4.1 billion in part to add capacity in its northern region.Meanwhile, CSX Corp. has appointed Brian Hammock resident vice president of state government affairs. Based in Baltimore, he will report to Regional VP of State Government and Community Affairs Bryan Rhode.Hammock will oversee the company's interactions with executive and legislative branches, as well as community officials in Maryland and Delaware.He previously was an attorney for Venable L.L.P. in Baltimore and served on the board of directors for the Canton Railroad Co. Prior to joining Venable, he served in Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley's office as a senior advisor and special assistant to the chief of staff. He also served as deputy campaign director and field director for O'Malley, and managed a campaign for Howard County Executive Ken Ulman.
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