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Freight-rail tax credit, Amtrak legislation champion Lott to leave Senate


The rail industry is losing a staunch supporter on Capitol Hill. Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.) recently announced plans to retire from the Senate by year's end, bringing his 35-year congressional career to a close.

Lott, 66, plans to spend more time with his family and pursue other job opportunities, possibly teaching.

Along with Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), Lott in April reintroduced the Freight Rail Infrastructure Capacity Expansion Act (S. 1125), which proposes to provide a 25 percent tax credit for capital expenditures made by railroads, shippers, ports, trucking companies and other transportation businesses to build or expand track, intermodal facilities, yards or other rail infrastructure, or to acquire locomotives. Lott introduced a similar bill to the Senate last year that died in Congress.

In January, Lott and Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) introduced the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2007 (S. 294), a six-year bill that proposes to provide $19.2 billion for Amtrak. In 2005, the senators introduced similar legislation.

Lott also has championed other rail-related legislation and previously chaired the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation's Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Subcommittee.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 11/28/2007