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Notice

Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Company-Discontinuance of Service Exemption-in Dane County, WI

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Union Pacific Railroad Company (UP) and Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Company (WSOR) have jointly filed a notice of exemption under 49 CFR 1152 Subpart F—Exempt Abandonments and Discontinuances of Service for UP to abandon and WSOR to discontinue service over a 4.4-mile line of railroad, known as the Central Soya Line, Harvard Subdivision, between milepost 85.5 in the City of Madison and milepost 89.9 in the City of Fitchburg, in Dane County, WI. The line traverses United States Postal Service Zip Codes 53711, 53717, and 53719.

UP and WSOR have certified that: (1) No local traffic has moved over the line for at least 2 years prior to the date of the filing of the notice and any overhead traffic on the line can be rerouted over other lines; (2) no formal complaint filed by a user of rail service on the line (or by a state or local government entity acting on behalf of such user) regarding cessation of service over the line either is pending with the Surface Transportation Board (Board) or with any U.S. District Court or has been decided in favor of complainant within the 2-year period; and (4) the requirements at 49 CFR 1105.7 (environmental reports), 49 CFR 1105.8 (historic reports), 49 CFR 1105.11 (transmittal letter), 49 CFR 1105.12 (newspaper publication), and 49 CFR 1152.50(d)(1) (notice to governmental agencies) have been met.

As a condition to these exemptions, any employee adversely affected by the abandonment or discontinuance shall be protected under Oregon Short Line R. Co.—Abandonment—Goshen, 360 I.C.C. 91 (1979). To address whether this condition adequately protects affected employees, a petition for partial revocation under 49 U.S.C. 10502(d) must be filed. Provided no formal expression of intent to file an offer of financial assistance (OFA) has been received, these exemptions will be effective on June 1, 2005, unless stayed pending reconsideration. Petitions to stay that do not involve environmental issues,[1] formal expressions of intent to file an OFA under 49 CFR 1152.27(c))(2),[2] and trail use/rail banking requests under 49 CFR 1152.29 must be filed by May 12, 2005. Petitions to reopen or requests for public use conditions under 49 CFR 1152.28 must be filed by May 23, 2005, with: Surface Transportation Board, 1925 K Street, NW., Washington, DC 20423-0001.

A copy of any petition filed with the Board should be sent to applicants' representatives: Mack H. Shumate, Attorney for Union Pacific Railroad Company, 101 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1920, Chicago, IL 60606; and John D. Heffner, John D Heffner, PLLC, Attorney for Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Company, Suite 800, 1920 N Street NW., Washington, DC 20036

If the verified notice contains false or misleading information, the exemption is void ab initio.

UP and WSOR have filed an environmental report which addresses the effects, if any, of the abandonment and discontinuance on the environment and historic resources. SEA will issue an environmental assessment (EA) by May 6, 2005. Interested persons may obtain a copy of the EA by writing to SEA (Room 500, Surface Transportation Board, Washington, DC 20423) or by calling SEA, at (202) 565-1539. [Assistance for the hearing impaired is available through the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339.] Comments on environmental and historic preservation matters must be filed within 15 days after the EA becomes available to the public.

Environmental, historic preservation, public use, or trail use/rail banking conditions will be imposed, where appropriate, in a subsequent decision.

Pursuant to the provisions of 49 CFR 1152.29(e)(2), UP shall file a notice of consummation with the Board to signify that it has exercised the authority granted and fully abandoned the line. If consummation has not been effected by UP's filing of a notice of consummation by May 2, 2006, and there are no legal or regulatory barriers to consummation, the authority to abandon will automatically expire.

Board decisions and notices are available on our Web site at http://www.stb.dot.gov.

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Decided: April 21, 2005.

By the Board, David M. Konschnik, Director, Office of Proceedings.

Vernon A. Williams,

Secretary.

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Footnotes

1.  The Board will grant a stay if an informed decision on environmental issues (whether raised by a party or by the Board's Section of Environmental Analysis (SEA) in its independent investigation) cannot be made before the exemption's effective date. See Exemption of Out-of-Service Rail Lines, 5 I.C.C.2d 377 (1989). Any request for a stay should be filed as soon as possible so that the Board may take appropriate action before the exemption's effective date.

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2.  Each offer of financial assistance must be accompanied by the filing fee, which currently is set at $1,200. See 49 CFR 1002.2(f)(25).

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[FR Doc. 05-8518 Filed 4-29-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4915-01-P