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The Railway Engineering-Maintenance Suppliers Association (REMSA) on Tuesday released its three advocacy priorities for 2017.As part of its agenda for the year, the association will focus on preventing "misguided regulations" from the Surface Transportation Board (STB), REMSA officials said in a press release. In particular, the association is concerned about the STB's notice of proposed rulemaking on forced access, which would require railroads to give competitors access to their lines. The competing railroad then may choose to operate at below-market rates, REMSA officials said."Most alarmingly, this forced access proposal would disrupt network efficiencies, which would limit revenues and discourage sustained investments and maintenance of the rail system," they added.REMSA also will champion tax reform, including the 45G short-line tax credit. In addition, the association has called for President Donald Trump to nominate "fair-minded" individuals to the STB."These individuals should understand the economic principles that shaped the 1980 Staggers Act and still help ensure railroads can earn necessary revenues today," REMSA officials said.
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