Norfolk Southern Railway Company (NSR) and Grand Elk Railroad, L.L.C. (GDLK) (collectively, applicants), have jointly filed a verified notice of exemption under 49 CFR part 1152, subpart F—Exempt Abandonments and Discontinuances of Service for NSR to abandon, and for GDLK to discontinue service over, an approximately 0.1-mile rail line, between mileposts IJ 44.6 and IJ 44.7, in Kalamazoo, Mich. (the Line). The Line traverses United States Postal Service Zip Codes 49007 and 49001.
Applicants have certified that: (1) No local traffic has moved over the Line for at least two years; (2) there is no overhead traffic on the Line that would have to be rerouted over other lines; (3) 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 two-year period; and (4) the requirements at 49 CFR 1105.7(c) (environmental report), 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 Railroad—Abandonment Portion Goshen Branch Between Firth & Ammon, in Bingham & Bonneville Counties, Idaho, 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 October 13, 2016, unless stayed pending reconsideration. Petitions to stay that do not involve environmental issues,
formal expressions of intent to file an OFA under 49 CFR 1152.27(c)(2),
and trail use/rail banking requests under 49 CFR 1152.29 must be filed by September 23, 2016. Petitions to reopen or requests for public use conditions under 49 CFR 1152.28 must be filed by October 3, 2016, with the Surface Transportation Board, 395 E Street SW., Washington, DC 20423-0001.
A copy of any petition filed with the Board should be sent to applicant's representative: William A. Mullins, Baker & Miller PLLC, 2401 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Suite 300, Washington, DC 20037.
If the verified notice contains false or misleading information, the exemptions are void ab initio.
Applicants have filed a combined environmental and historic report that addresses the effects, if any, of the abandonment and discontinuance on the environment and historic resources. OEA will issue an environmental assessment (EA) by September 16, 2016. Interested persons may obtain a copy of the EA by writing to OEA (Room 1100, Surface Transportation Board, Washington, DC 20423-0001) or by calling OEA at (202) 245-0305. 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), NSR 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 NSR's filing of a notice of consummation by September 13, 2017, 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 “WWW.STB.DOT.GOV.
Decided: September 8, 2016.
By the Board, Rachel D. Campbell, Director, Office of Proceedings.
[FR Doc. 2016-21986 Filed 9-12-16; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4915-01-P