Simplified Standards for Rail Rate Cases
The Surface Transportation Board has instituted a proceeding to seek public comments on proposed changes to revise and clarify its guidelines for deciding small rate cases. In particular, the Board proposes to: create a simplified stand-alone cost (Simplified-SAC) method to be used in medium-size rate disputes for which a full stand- alone cost (Full-SAC) presentation would be too costly, given the value of the case; retain the Three-Benchmark method for small rate disputes for which a Simplified-SAC presentation would be too costly; and establish eligibility presumptions to distinguish between large, medium-size, and small rail rate disputes. These changes are intended to advance Congress' mandate to ``establish a simplified and expedited method for determining the reasonableness of challenged rail rates in those cases in which a full SAC presentation is too costly, given the value of the case.'' 49 U.S.C. 10701(d)(3).