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U.S. needs national freight transportation program and trust fund, freight coalition says


A group of shippers and public and private transportation providers believes the United States needs a “comprehensive national freight program” and “adequate infrastructure investment” to handle the large increase in freight demand that’s expected to occur during the next two decades.

The Freight Stakeholders Coalition, a 17-member group of that includes the Association of American Railroads, Intermodal Association of North America, American Trucking Associations and National Industrial Transportation League, issued its 2009 Surface Transportation Reauthorization Platform yesterday. The coalition listed 10 principles that it has agreed to for the upcoming surface transportation reauthorization legislation.

The principles include a mandate for the development of a national multi-modal freight strategic plan and dedicated funds for freight mobility/goods movement; the authorization of a state-administered freight transportation program; and establishment of a multi-modal freight office within the U.S. Department of Transportation. If a new freight trust fund is created, the proceeds should only be spent on projects that help freight transportation, the coalition believes.

“The next surface transportation authorization bill must maintain a strong federal role and provide for the creation of a national freight program,” coalition officials said in a prepared statement.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/22/2009