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3/12/2002



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

NS, electric utility garner STB evidence protection for coal-rate complaint


Surface Transportation Board March 11 granted Norfolk Southern Railway and Carolina Power & Light Co. (CP&L) a protective order based on CP&L's Feb. 1 complaint against NS, alleging that the railroad's rates for coal moves from West Virginia, Kentucky and Virginia to the utility's Hyco and Mayo Creek, N.C., electrical generating plants exceed maximum reasonable levels. CP&L also claims NS possesses market dominance over the lines' traffic.
Through a Feb. 12 joint motion, CP&L and NS sought a protective order with respect to evidentiary submissions and aid of discovery, governing the
production of highly confidential material, and stipulating that the protected exchange of material won't constitute an unauthorized disclosure or result in criminal penalties.
Along with directing NS and CP&L to comply with the protective order, STB ruled that the parties must follow their agreed-upon procedural schedule: discovery period ends April 17, with opening statements due June 3; reply evidence, Aug. 30; and rebuttal evidence, Sept. 30.


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