Ballard Terminal Railroad Company, L.L.C.-Acquisition and Operation Exemption-Woodinville Subdivision
On April 2, 2013, Ballard Terminal Railroad Company, L.L.C. (Ballard), a Class III rail carrier, filed a petition under 49 U.S.C. 10502 for exemption from the provisions of 49 U.S.C. 10902 to acquire the residual common carrier rights and obligations, including the right to reinstitute rail service, and the physical trackage assets on a line of railroad currently owned by the City of Kirkland (City) and the Port of Seattle (Port) in King County, Wash. (the Line), and currently subject to railbanking/interim trail use under the National Trails System Act, 16 U.S.C. 1247(d). Ballard also seeks the right to provide common carrier rail service over the Line, and requests that the Board order the transfer of all the rail materials to Ballard at their net liquidation value. Ballard states that it has no objection to shared use of the right-of-way as both a rail line and a trail. The Line consists of a portion of the former BNSF Railway Company (BNSF) Woodinville Subdivision extending between milepost 23.8 at Woodinville, Wash., and milepost 12.6 at Bellevue, Wash.\1\ The petition for exemption was filed concurrently with a Ballard petition to partially vacate the NITU issued in Docket No. AB 6 (Sub-No. 465X) for the Woodinville Subdivision (extending from milepost 23.8 to milepost 11.25). That NITU permitted railbanking/interim trail use negotiations under 16 U.S.C. 1247(d).\2\ The Board seeks comments from interested persons on Ballard's request to resume rail service and partially vacate the NITU.
Information Collection Activities (Complaints, Petitions for Declaratory Orders, and Petitions for Relief Not Otherwise Specified)
As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 3501-3519 (PRA), the Surface Transportation Board (STB or Board) gives notice of its intent to seek from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval of the information collections required for (1) complaints filed under 49 U.S.C. 721, 10701-10707, 11101 and 11701- 11707 and 49 CFR 1111; (2) petitions for declaratory orders under 5 U.S.C. 554(e) and 721; and (3) ``catch all'' petitions (for relief not otherwise specified) under 49 U.S.C. 721 and 49 CFR part 1117. Under these statutory and regulatory sections, the Board provides procedures for persons to make a broad range of claims and to seek a broad range of remedies before the Board. The information collections relevant to these complaints and petitions are described separately below. For each collection, comments are requested concerning: (1) The accuracy of the Board's burden estimates; (2) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; (3) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology when appropriate; and (4) whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Board, including whether the collection has practical utility. Submitted comments will be summarized and included in the Board's request for OMB approval.
California High-Speed Rail Authority-Construction Exemption-In Merced, Madera and Fresno Counties, CA
In accordance with Surface Transportation Board (Board) procedures for complying with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) at 49 CFR part 1105, and consistent with the regulations of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) for implementing NEPA at 40 CFR 1506.3, the Board's Office of Environmental Analysis (OEA) is recommending that the Board adopt a Final Environmental Impact Statement (Final EIS) issued by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority). This Final EIS is titled ``California High-Speed Train: Merced to Fresno Section, Final Project Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement.'' The Final EIS assesses the potential environmental impacts of constructing and operating a high-speed passenger train (HST) between Merced and Fresno in the San Joaquin Valley, California. OEA has independently reviewed the Final EIS and agrees with its analysis and conclusions. OEA is issuing this notice to advise the public and interested agencies that, should the Board find jurisdiction over the Authority's project, OEA is recommending, in any decision ruling on the request for construction authority, that the Board adopt the Final EIS issued by FRA and the Authority to satisfy the Board's NEPA obligations.