Ace Express Coaches, LLC, et al.; Acquisition and Control; Certain Properties of Evergreen Trails, Inc. d/b/a Horizon Coach Lines, 22613-22615 [2015-09360]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 77 / Wednesday, April 22, 2015 / Notices Rather it will be a cost associated with pursuing a Title XI loan guarantee. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Section 4: What if an available U.S.-flag vessel cannot be found or the total ocean freight rate appears too expensive? Only MARAD can issue a determination that no qualified U.S.-flag vessels are available at fair and reasonable rates. If a Title XI applicant, through diligent efforts, is unable to find a U.S.-flag carrier, without prior consultation with MARAD and a determination of non-availability of qualified U.S.-flag carriage, the applicant’s due diligence alone will not excuse that applicant from cargo preference requirements. Title XI applicants and prospective applicants are encouraged to communicate with U.S.-flag carriers at the earliest possible time to ensure the greatest degree of coordination and to obtain the best rates. In the event that a Title XI applicant or prospective applicant experiences difficulty obtaining U.S.flag service, or if it can only find partial U.S.-flag service, the applicant is encouraged to contact MARAD as soon as possible at cargo.marad@dot.gov or (202) 366–4610. With proper planning, U.S.-flag service can generally be obtained at fair and reasonable rates. Early planning and coordination are the keys to meeting cargo preference requirements in Title XI as in all other Federal programs. Section 5: What if non-compliance with Cargo Preference requirements occurs? At MARAD’s option, as the administrator of the Title XI program, non-compliant parties may be denied a letter commitment or, consistent with 46 U.S.C. 55305(d)(2)(B), may required to provide make-up cargoes for carriage aboard U.S.-flag vessels to offset the lost cargo carriage supporting work under the Title XI financing application. In extreme cases where knowing and willful violations occur, consistent with 46 U.S.C. 55305(d)(2)(C), MARAD can issue a civil penalty of not more than $25,000 for each violation, with each day of a continuing violation following the date of shipment counting as a separate violation. Additionally, cargo preference requirements are incorporated into Title XI letter commitments; therefore, failure to properly adhere to cargo preference requirements could impact MARAD’s ability to close on a Title XI guarantee because the recipient has not met its obligations under the letter commitment. However, with early planning and coordination with MARAD, no cargo preference violations VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Apr 21, 2015 Jkt 235001 need occur under any Title XI application, letter commitment or guarantee. Section 6: What is the purpose of Cargo Preference? The CPA 1954 provides a revenue base that helps to retain and encourages a privately owned and operated U.S.flag merchant fleet. The U.S.-flag fleet is a vital resource, providing essential sealift capability to globally project and sustain the U.S. Armed Forces or support other national emergencies, maintaining a cadre of skilled seafarers available in time of national emergencies, and helping to protect U.S. economic interests. The U.S. maritime industry also supports thousands of seagoing, shore-based, and secondary, associated jobs, supporting the Nation’s economic growth. It is imperative that Federal programs, such as Title XI, and Title XI applicants and beneficiary shipyards, as members of the U.S. maritime industry, support this national priority through proper adherence to cargo preference requirements. Therefore, while the use of U.S.-flag vessels to carry 50 percent of the gross tons of ocean borne cargoes is the statutory minimum, MARAD, as the agency charged with administering both Title XI and the CPA 1954, encourages the use of U.S.-flag vessels more than the minimum whenever possible. Privacy Act In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice, DOT/ALL–14 FDMS, accessible through www.dot.gov/privacy. In order to facilitate comment tracking and response, we encourage commenters to provide their name, or the name of their organization; however, submission of names is completely optional. Whether or not commenters identify themselves, all timely comments will be fully considered. If you wish to provide comments containing proprietary or confidential information, please contact the agency for alternate submission instructions. (Authority: 46 U.S.C. 55305; 46 U.S.C. Ch. 537) * * * * * By Order of the Maritime Administrator. Dated: April 17, 2015. Thomas M. Hudson, Jr., Acting Secretary, Maritime Administration. [FR Doc. 2015–09371 Filed 4–21–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–81–P PO 00000 Frm 00141 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 22613 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Surface Transportation Board [Docket No. MCF 21062] Ace Express Coaches, LLC, et al.; Acquisition and Control; Certain Properties of Evergreen Trails, Inc. d/b/a Horizon Coach Lines AGENCY: Surface Transportation Board, DOT. Notice tentatively approving and authorizing finance transaction. ACTION: Ace Express Coaches, LLC (Buyer), and its affiliated parties (All Aboard America! Holdings, Inc. (AHI), Celerity AHI Holdings SPV, LLC (Celerity Holdings), Celerity Partners IV, LLC (Celerity Partners), and Industrial Bus Lines, Inc. (IBL)) (collectively, Applicants) have filed an application under 49 U.S.C. 14303 for the Buyer to acquire certain assets of Evergreen Trails, Inc. d/b/a Horizon Coach Lines (Seller), and for the continuance in control of the Buyer by AHI, Celerity Holdings, and Celerity Partners once the Buyer becomes a federally regulated motor carrier of passengers. The Board is tentatively approving and authorizing the transaction, and, if no opposing comments are timely filed, this notice will be the final Board action. Persons wishing to oppose the application must follow the rules at 49 CFR 1182.5 and 1182.8. DATES: Comments must be filed by June 8, 2015. Applicants may file a reply by June 22, 2015. If no comments are filed by June 8, 2015, this notice shall be effective on June 9, 2015. ADDRESSES: Send an original and 10 copies of any comments referring to Docket No. MCF 21062 to: Surface Transportation Board, 395 E Street SW., Washington, DC 20423–0001. In addition, send one copy of comments to Applicants’ representative: Mark J. Andrews, Strasburger & Price, LLP, Suite 717, 1025 Connecticut Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20036. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Matthew Bornstein: (202) 245–0385. Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) for the hearing impaired: 1–800– 877–8339. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Buyer is a newly established limited liability company under the laws of Delaware.1 SUMMARY: 1 Concurrently with their application, the parties also filed a request for interim approval under 49 U.S.C. 14303(i). In a decision served on April 8, 2015, in related Docket No. MCF 21062 TA, interim approval was granted, effective on the service date of that decision. E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 22614 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 77 / Wednesday, April 22, 2015 / Notices Applicants state that the Buyer applied to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) for nationwide charter and special operations authority, as a motor passenger carrier operating over irregular routes, in Docket No. MC– 908184. IBL, a motor carrier of passengers (MC–133171), is a corporation established under the laws of New Mexico. IBL provides charter and contract services in Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas utilizing 101 motor coaches and minibuses. The Buyer and IBL are under the control of AHI, Celerity Holdings, and Celerity Partners, each a noncarrier organized under the laws of Delaware. AHI also owns 100 percent of the stock of two other federally regulated motor carriers of passengers: Hotard Coaches, Inc. (Hotard) (MC–148331) and Sureride Charter Inc. d/b/a Sundiego Charter Co. (Sundiego) (MC–324772).2 Hotard operates local and regional charter and contract services within Louisiana and southern Mississippi. Sundiego conducts charter, sightseeing, and various shuttle operations to, from, and within California and adjoining states. The Seller, a motor carrier of passengers (MC–107638), is a corporation established under the laws of the State of Washington. The Seller is under the control of Francis W. Sherman, a noncarrier individual. Mr. Sherman exercises control of the Seller through intermediate holding companies FSCS Corporation and TMS West Coast, Inc. Applicants state that the Seller currently provides both government and corporate shuttle services, scheduled shuttle services between Denver and two mountain resort towns in Colorado (carrying both patrons and employees of the casinos located there), and leisure travel services to, from, and within Colorado. The government shuttle services include services provided under a contract between the Seller and the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD). Applicants state that the Seller utilized approximately eight vans and minibuses for the corporate shuttles, 11 motor coaches for the casino operations, and 33 coaches plus two minibuses for all other work. Applicants indicate that the revenue mix generated by these assets in 2014 for the government/corporate shuttles, casino operations, and charters was approximately 9, 48, and 43 percent, respectively. In addition, the 2 The Board authorized control of Hotard and IBL by AHI and the Celerity entities in Celerity Partners IV—Control—Calco Travel, MCF 21044 (STB served May 11, 2012). The Board also authorized control of Sundiego by AHI and the Celerity entities in Celerity Partners IV—Control— Sureride Charter, MCF 21055 (STB served Oct. 29, 2013). VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Apr 21, 2015 Jkt 235001 Applicants state that the Seller has been awarded an intercity passenger service contract with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) under which 13 additional CDOT-owned coaches will commence operations within the next few months. Applicants explain that the proposed transaction would close in three phases. The first phase, as discussed in MCF 21062 TA, contemplates that the Buyer and IBL would acquire control of the assets currently operated by the Seller in Colorado.3 All of the non-DOD assets, including vehicles, would be operated by IBL (under its existing FMCSA authority) pursuant to an interim management agreement between IBL and the Buyer. Vehicles owned by the Seller would be leased to the Buyer, and vehicle leases to the Seller by third parties would be assigned to the Buyer. The DOD contract would be assigned to and performed by IBL under a management agreement with the Buyer, as required by DOD regulations, which preclude contracts with passenger carriers in existence less than a year. The second phase of the proposed transaction would entail the Buyer becoming permanent owner and operator of all the non-DOD assets, including vehicles, upon the effective date of the Board’s approval of the transaction and once the Buyer has obtained FMCSA operating authority. Any interim role of IBL managing such assets would therefore end. Lastly, the third phase of the proposed transaction would occur as soon as practicable after the first anniversary of the phase two closing. The Buyer would replace IBL as the direct operator of the DOD contract and the proposed acquisition would then be complete. Under 49 U.S.C. 14303(b), the Board must approve and authorize a transaction that it finds consistent with the public interest, taking into consideration at least: (1) The effect of the proposed transaction on the adequacy of transportation to the public; (2) the total fixed charges that result; and (3) the interest of affected carrier employees. Applicants have submitted information, as required by 49 CFR 1182.2, including the information to demonstrate that the proposed transaction is consistent with the public 3 These assets include: (i) The Seller’s operations center in Golden, Colorado, plus six other leased terminals and parking facilities; (ii) approximately 44 motor coaches and 23 other vehicles; (iii) all maintenance facilities and supplies for these vehicles; (iv) certain licenses and permits necessary to operate the assets; (v) furniture, fixtures, office equipment, software, and intellectual property in use for such operations; and (vi) existing and prospective charter and shuttle contracts based in Colorado. PO 00000 Frm 00142 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 interest under 49 U.S.C. 14303(b), and a statement that Applicants’ aggregate gross operating revenues of the Buyer, IBL, Hotard, Sundiego, and the Colorado assets of the Seller exceeded $2 million for the preceding 12-month period, see 49 U.S.C. 14303(g). Applicants submit that the proposed transaction would have a positive net impact on the adequacy of transportation to the public because Applicants do not intend to change the operations of Seller’s assets, but intend to modernize the bus fleet used in those operations. They anticipate that the proposed transaction would enhance services to the public by implementing vehicle sharing arrangements, coordinated driver training and safety management services, and by centralizing certain management support functions. With respect to fixed charges, Applicants state that the combined scale of operations of the Buyer, IBL, Hotard, and Sundiego would allow the Buyer to enhance its volume purchasing power, thereby reducing insurance premiums and achieving deeper volume discounts for tires, equipment, and fuel. Applicants claim that the proposed transaction also would have a positive impact on employees. The Buyer intends to retain Seller’s existing management and hourly employees who are involved in the operation of the assets being acquired. Applicants assert that this would result in continued job security and opportunities for growth in the combined business of the Buyer and its affiliated carriers. Applicants further claim that the acquisition would not likely affect competition because the markets in which the Seller’s Colorado assets and the previously approved combination of Sundiego, IBL, and Hotard operate are adjacent, but do not significantly overlap. Applicants note that numerous carriers compete with the Seller’s operations in Colorado and that the Seller operates fewer than 50 percent of all coaches in the Denver and Colorado Springs markets. These local and regional carriers include Seller’s largest competitor, Busco, Inc. d/b/a Arrow Stage Lines (Busco), which operates 33 motor coaches from its Denver facility and has 216 coaches in its total fleet. Ramblin Express, Inc. (Ramblin) also operates 45 units and has facilities in Denver and Colorado Springs, and Colorado Tour Line LLC, which operates under the GrayLine brand, operates motor coaches in both markets. In addition, Applicants state that Colorado Charter Line, Inc. (CCL) and Premier Charter (Premier) are two E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1 asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 77 / Wednesday, April 22, 2015 / Notices smaller charter companies that operate in the Denver area. According to Applicants, in the casino shuttle market, the Seller and Ramblin are the current operators (regulated by the Colorado Public Utility Commission), and the Buyer merely would replace the Seller in this market. Applicants argue that services provided under contract involve a competitive bidding process where the competing local and regional carriers mentioned above could bid for shuttle services, along with any interested nationwide operators and that thus, the market would remain competitive if the proposed transaction were approved. Applicants state that services provided on a ‘‘spot basis’’ are the norm for much of Seller’s charter business involving leisure travel and that these charter operations face competition from nationwide operators in addition to the local and regional carriers mentioned above (Busco, Ramblin, CCL, and Premier). They also note that motor passenger carriers face intense market competition from other transportation modes, such as private automobiles, airlines, and trains. On the basis of the application, the Board finds that the proposed acquisition is consistent with the public interest and should be tentatively approved and authorized. If any opposing comments are timely filed, these findings will be deemed vacated, and, unless a final decision can be made on the record as developed, a procedural schedule will be adopted to reconsider the application. See 49 CFR 1182.6(c). If no opposing comments are filed by the expiration of the comment period, this notice will take effect automatically and will be the final Board action. Board decisions and notices are available on our Web site at ‘‘WWW.STB.DOT.GOV’’. This decision will not significantly affect either the quality of the human environment or the conservation of energy resources. It is ordered: 1. The proposed transaction is approved and authorized, subject to the filing of opposing comments. 2. If opposing comments are timely filed, the findings made in this notice will be deemed vacated. 3. This notice will be effective June 9, 2015, unless opposing comments are filed by June 8, 2015. 4. A copy of this decision will be served on: (1) U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; (2) the U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:00 Apr 21, 2015 Jkt 235001 Division, 10th Street & Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20530; and (3) the U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of the General Counsel, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. Decided: April 16, 2015. By the Board, Acting Chairman Miller and Vice Chairman Begeman. Brendetta S. Jones, Clearance Clerk. [FR Doc. 2015–09360 Filed 4–21–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4915–01–P DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Open Meeting of the Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance Departmental Offices, U.S. Department of the Treasury. ACTION: Notice of open meeting. AGENCY: This notice announces that the Department of the Treasury’s Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance (‘‘Committee’’) will convene a meeting on Thursday, May 7, 2015, in the Cash Room, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20220, from 1:00–5:00 p.m. Eastern Time. The meeting is open to the public, and the site is accessible to individuals with disabilities. DATES: The meeting will be held on Thursday, May 7, 2015, from 1:00–5:00 p.m. Eastern Time. ADDRESSES: The Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance meeting will be held in the Cash Room, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20220. The meeting will be open to the public. Because the meeting will be held in a secured facility, members of the public who plan to attend the meeting must either: 1. Register online. Attendees may visit http://www.cvent.com/d/ frqz2l?ct=6128d144-9ad5-45f5-910cc7b44560aae0&RefID=FACI+General +Registration and fill out a secure online registration form. A valid email address will be required to complete online registration. (Note: Online registration will close at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on Friday, May 1, 2015.) 2. Contact the Federal Insurance Office (FIO), at (202) 622–5892, by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on Friday, May 1, 2015, and provide registration information. Requests for reasonable accommodations under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act should be directed to Marcia Wilson, Office of Civil Rights and Diversity, Department SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00143 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 22615 of the Treasury at (202) 622–8177, or marcia.wilson@treasury.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Brett D. Hewitt, Policy Advisor, FIO, Room 1410, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220, at (202) 622– 5892 (this is not a toll-free number). Persons who have difficulty hearing or speaking may access this number via TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Relay Service at (800) 877–8339. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Notice of this meeting is provided in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. II, 10(a)(2), through implementing regulations at 41 CFR 102–3.150. Public Comment: Members of the public wishing to comment on the business of the Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance are invited to submit written statements by any of the following methods: Electronic Statements • Send electronic comments to faci@ treasury.gov. Paper Statements • Send paper statements in triplicate to the Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance, Room 1410, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20220. In general, the Department of the Treasury will post all statements on its Web site http://www.treasury.gov/ about/organizational-structure/offices/ Pages/Federal-Insurance.aspx without change, including any business or personal information provided such as names, addresses, email addresses, or telephone numbers. The Department of the Treasury will also make such statements available for public inspection and copying in the Department of the Treasury’s Library, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20220, on official business days between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time. You can make an appointment to inspect statements by telephoning (202) 622–0990. All statements, including attachments and other supporting materials, received are part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly. Tentative Agenda/Topics for Discussion: This is a periodic meeting of the Federal Advisory Committee on Insurance. In this meeting, the Committee will discuss a number of issues, including cybersecurity related to the insurance industry, including E:\FR\FM\22APN1.SGM 22APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 77 (Wednesday, April 22, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 22613-22615]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-09360]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Surface Transportation Board

[Docket No. MCF 21062]


Ace Express Coaches, LLC, et al.; Acquisition and Control; 
Certain Properties of Evergreen Trails, Inc. d/b/a Horizon Coach Lines

AGENCY: Surface Transportation Board, DOT.

ACTION: Notice tentatively approving and authorizing finance 
transaction.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Ace Express Coaches, LLC (Buyer), and its affiliated parties 
(All Aboard America! Holdings, Inc. (AHI), Celerity AHI Holdings SPV, 
LLC (Celerity Holdings), Celerity Partners IV, LLC (Celerity Partners), 
and Industrial Bus Lines, Inc. (IBL)) (collectively, Applicants) have 
filed an application under 49 U.S.C. 14303 for the Buyer to acquire 
certain assets of Evergreen Trails, Inc. d/b/a Horizon Coach Lines 
(Seller), and for the continuance in control of the Buyer by AHI, 
Celerity Holdings, and Celerity Partners once the Buyer becomes a 
federally regulated motor carrier of passengers. The Board is 
tentatively approving and authorizing the transaction, and, if no 
opposing comments are timely filed, this notice will be the final Board 
action. Persons wishing to oppose the application must follow the rules 
at 49 CFR 1182.5 and 1182.8.

DATES: Comments must be filed by June 8, 2015. Applicants may file a 
reply by June 22, 2015. If no comments are filed by June 8, 2015, this 
notice shall be effective on June 9, 2015.

ADDRESSES: Send an original and 10 copies of any comments referring to 
Docket No. MCF 21062 to: Surface Transportation Board, 395 E Street 
SW., Washington, DC 20423-0001. In addition, send one copy of comments 
to Applicants' representative: Mark J. Andrews, Strasburger & Price, 
LLP, Suite 717, 1025 Connecticut Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20036.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Matthew Bornstein: (202) 245-0385. 
Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) for the hearing impaired: 1-
800-877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Buyer is a newly established limited 
liability company under the laws of Delaware.\1\

[[Page 22614]]

Applicants state that the Buyer applied to the Federal Motor Carrier 
Safety Administration (FMCSA) for nationwide charter and special 
operations authority, as a motor passenger carrier operating over 
irregular routes, in Docket No. MC-908184. IBL, a motor carrier of 
passengers (MC-133171), is a corporation established under the laws of 
New Mexico. IBL provides charter and contract services in Arizona, New 
Mexico, and Texas utilizing 101 motor coaches and minibuses. The Buyer 
and IBL are under the control of AHI, Celerity Holdings, and Celerity 
Partners, each a noncarrier organized under the laws of Delaware. AHI 
also owns 100 percent of the stock of two other federally regulated 
motor carriers of passengers: Hotard Coaches, Inc. (Hotard) (MC-148331) 
and Sureride Charter Inc. d/b/a Sundiego Charter Co. (Sundiego) (MC-
324772).\2\ Hotard operates local and regional charter and contract 
services within Louisiana and southern Mississippi. Sundiego conducts 
charter, sightseeing, and various shuttle operations to, from, and 
within California and adjoining states.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Concurrently with their application, the parties also filed 
a request for interim approval under 49 U.S.C. 14303(i). In a 
decision served on April 8, 2015, in related Docket No. MCF 21062 
TA, interim approval was granted, effective on the service date of 
that decision.
    \2\ The Board authorized control of Hotard and IBL by AHI and 
the Celerity entities in Celerity Partners IV--Control--Calco 
Travel, MCF 21044 (STB served May 11, 2012). The Board also 
authorized control of Sundiego by AHI and the Celerity entities in 
Celerity Partners IV--Control-- Sureride Charter, MCF 21055 (STB 
served Oct. 29, 2013).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Seller, a motor carrier of passengers (MC-107638), is a 
corporation established under the laws of the State of Washington. The 
Seller is under the control of Francis W. Sherman, a noncarrier 
individual. Mr. Sherman exercises control of the Seller through 
intermediate holding companies FSCS Corporation and TMS West Coast, 
Inc. Applicants state that the Seller currently provides both 
government and corporate shuttle services, scheduled shuttle services 
between Denver and two mountain resort towns in Colorado (carrying both 
patrons and employees of the casinos located there), and leisure travel 
services to, from, and within Colorado. The government shuttle services 
include services provided under a contract between the Seller and the 
U.S. Department of Defense (DOD). Applicants state that the Seller 
utilized approximately eight vans and minibuses for the corporate 
shuttles, 11 motor coaches for the casino operations, and 33 coaches 
plus two minibuses for all other work. Applicants indicate that the 
revenue mix generated by these assets in 2014 for the government/
corporate shuttles, casino operations, and charters was approximately 
9, 48, and 43 percent, respectively. In addition, the Applicants state 
that the Seller has been awarded an intercity passenger service 
contract with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) under 
which 13 additional CDOT-owned coaches will commence operations within 
the next few months.
    Applicants explain that the proposed transaction would close in 
three phases. The first phase, as discussed in MCF 21062 TA, 
contemplates that the Buyer and IBL would acquire control of the assets 
currently operated by the Seller in Colorado.\3\ All of the non-DOD 
assets, including vehicles, would be operated by IBL (under its 
existing FMCSA authority) pursuant to an interim management agreement 
between IBL and the Buyer. Vehicles owned by the Seller would be leased 
to the Buyer, and vehicle leases to the Seller by third parties would 
be assigned to the Buyer. The DOD contract would be assigned to and 
performed by IBL under a management agreement with the Buyer, as 
required by DOD regulations, which preclude contracts with passenger 
carriers in existence less than a year.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ These assets include: (i) The Seller's operations center in 
Golden, Colorado, plus six other leased terminals and parking 
facilities; (ii) approximately 44 motor coaches and 23 other 
vehicles; (iii) all maintenance facilities and supplies for these 
vehicles; (iv) certain licenses and permits necessary to operate the 
assets; (v) furniture, fixtures, office equipment, software, and 
intellectual property in use for such operations; and (vi) existing 
and prospective charter and shuttle contracts based in Colorado.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The second phase of the proposed transaction would entail the Buyer 
becoming permanent owner and operator of all the non-DOD assets, 
including vehicles, upon the effective date of the Board's approval of 
the transaction and once the Buyer has obtained FMCSA operating 
authority. Any interim role of IBL managing such assets would therefore 
end. Lastly, the third phase of the proposed transaction would occur as 
soon as practicable after the first anniversary of the phase two 
closing. The Buyer would replace IBL as the direct operator of the DOD 
contract and the proposed acquisition would then be complete.
    Under 49 U.S.C. 14303(b), the Board must approve and authorize a 
transaction that it finds consistent with the public interest, taking 
into consideration at least: (1) The effect of the proposed transaction 
on the adequacy of transportation to the public; (2) the total fixed 
charges that result; and (3) the interest of affected carrier 
employees. Applicants have submitted information, as required by 49 CFR 
1182.2, including the information to demonstrate that the proposed 
transaction is consistent with the public interest under 49 U.S.C. 
14303(b), and a statement that Applicants' aggregate gross operating 
revenues of the Buyer, IBL, Hotard, Sundiego, and the Colorado assets 
of the Seller exceeded $2 million for the preceding 12-month period, 
see 49 U.S.C. 14303(g).
    Applicants submit that the proposed transaction would have a 
positive net impact on the adequacy of transportation to the public 
because Applicants do not intend to change the operations of Seller's 
assets, but intend to modernize the bus fleet used in those operations. 
They anticipate that the proposed transaction would enhance services to 
the public by implementing vehicle sharing arrangements, coordinated 
driver training and safety management services, and by centralizing 
certain management support functions. With respect to fixed charges, 
Applicants state that the combined scale of operations of the Buyer, 
IBL, Hotard, and Sundiego would allow the Buyer to enhance its volume 
purchasing power, thereby reducing insurance premiums and achieving 
deeper volume discounts for tires, equipment, and fuel. Applicants 
claim that the proposed transaction also would have a positive impact 
on employees. The Buyer intends to retain Seller's existing management 
and hourly employees who are involved in the operation of the assets 
being acquired. Applicants assert that this would result in continued 
job security and opportunities for growth in the combined business of 
the Buyer and its affiliated carriers.
    Applicants further claim that the acquisition would not likely 
affect competition because the markets in which the Seller's Colorado 
assets and the previously approved combination of Sundiego, IBL, and 
Hotard operate are adjacent, but do not significantly overlap. 
Applicants note that numerous carriers compete with the Seller's 
operations in Colorado and that the Seller operates fewer than 50 
percent of all coaches in the Denver and Colorado Springs markets. 
These local and regional carriers include Seller's largest competitor, 
Busco, Inc. d/b/a Arrow Stage Lines (Busco), which operates 33 motor 
coaches from its Denver facility and has 216 coaches in its total 
fleet. Ramblin Express, Inc. (Ramblin) also operates 45 units and has 
facilities in Denver and Colorado Springs, and Colorado Tour Line LLC, 
which operates under the GrayLine brand, operates motor coaches in both 
markets. In addition, Applicants state that Colorado Charter Line, Inc. 
(CCL) and Premier Charter (Premier) are two

[[Page 22615]]

smaller charter companies that operate in the Denver area.
    According to Applicants, in the casino shuttle market, the Seller 
and Ramblin are the current operators (regulated by the Colorado Public 
Utility Commission), and the Buyer merely would replace the Seller in 
this market. Applicants argue that services provided under contract 
involve a competitive bidding process where the competing local and 
regional carriers mentioned above could bid for shuttle services, along 
with any interested nationwide operators and that thus, the market 
would remain competitive if the proposed transaction were approved. 
Applicants state that services provided on a ``spot basis'' are the 
norm for much of Seller's charter business involving leisure travel and 
that these charter operations face competition from nationwide 
operators in addition to the local and regional carriers mentioned 
above (Busco, Ramblin, CCL, and Premier). They also note that motor 
passenger carriers face intense market competition from other 
transportation modes, such as private automobiles, airlines, and 
trains.
    On the basis of the application, the Board finds that the proposed 
acquisition is consistent with the public interest and should be 
tentatively approved and authorized. If any opposing comments are 
timely filed, these findings will be deemed vacated, and, unless a 
final decision can be made on the record as developed, a procedural 
schedule will be adopted to reconsider the application. See 49 CFR 
1182.6(c). If no opposing comments are filed by the expiration of the 
comment period, this notice will take effect automatically and will be 
the final Board action.
    Board decisions and notices are available on our Web site at 
``WWW.STB.DOT.GOV''.
    This decision will not significantly affect either the quality of 
the human environment or the conservation of energy resources.
    It is ordered:
    1. The proposed transaction is approved and authorized, subject to 
the filing of opposing comments.
    2. If opposing comments are timely filed, the findings made in this 
notice will be deemed vacated.
    3. This notice will be effective June 9, 2015, unless opposing 
comments are filed by June 8, 2015.
    4. A copy of this decision will be served on: (1) U.S. Department 
of Transportation, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 1200 
New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; (2) the U.S. Department of 
Justice, Antitrust Division, 10th Street & Pennsylvania Avenue NW., 
Washington, DC 20530; and (3) the U.S. Department of Transportation, 
Office of the General Counsel, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, 
DC 20590.

    Decided: April 16, 2015.

    By the Board, Acting Chairman Miller and Vice Chairman Begeman.
Brendetta S. Jones,
Clearance Clerk.
[FR Doc. 2015-09360 Filed 4-21-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4915-01-P