Wisconsin & Southern Railroad, L.L.C.-Acquisition and Operation Exemption-City of Fitchburg and Village of Oregon, WI
The Board is granting an exemption under 49 U.S.C. 10502 from the prior approval requirements of 49 U.S.C. 10902 for the Wisconsin & Southern Railroad, L.L.C. (WSOR), a Class II rail carrier, to acquire and operate a permanent, exclusive freight rail operating easement over an approximately 15-mile line of railroad (the Line) owned by the City of Fitchburg and the Village of Oregon, Wis. (the Municipalities). The Line, also known as the Evansville Line, extends between milepost 119.0, near Evansville, Wis., and milepost 134.0, near ``MX'' (a crossing of WSOR near Madison, Wis.), in Dane, Green, and Rock Counties. WSOR states that there has been no freight rail traffic on the Line since 1997. However, WSOR asserts that the Wisconsin River Rail Transit Commission (WRRTC), which describes itself as a governmental entity representing a consortium of nine Wisconsin counties, has recently been notified that a shipper seeking rail service is locating in the Village of Oregon. Consequently, WRRTC has requested that WSOR initiate service over the Line. WSOR states that it will enter into an agreement with the Municipalities whereby WSOR will acquire the exclusive rail freight easement for resumption of rail operations. The Board is also granting WSOR's request for a waiver of the employee notice requirements of 49 CFR 1121.4(h). This exemption is subject to standard labor protective conditions.