Thank you for agreeing to return to
Over the past several months, I have held meetings with stakeholders including farmers, suppliers, grain dealers and financial executives from across
We have seen and heard of the progress made by BNSF, and we thank them for their efforts. They appear to be taking this matter seriously, which is more than we can say for CP. It appears that the CP is more concerned about their stock price than their customer service. We have heard that three CP shippers are now constructing facilities on the BNSF line because the service and productivity of the CP is so abysmal.
But I'm not just here to talk about the problems; I want to talk solutions and immediate relief for our farmers who are the backbone of our state.
One thing you can do is even the playing field. We know that shippers face demurrage charges if the cars sit too long on their siding. However, if the rail company fails to deliver on their accepted orders, they suffer no consequences. Companies say they pay the price of lost business, but their balance sheets and stock prices say something different. The rail companies are posting record profits while farmers continue to suffer record losses and cannot move their product.
As I stated, these contracts appear to be completely one sided. I ask you to level the playing field making the railroads pay a price to the shippers for the orders they accepted and have failed to deliver.
Leveling the playing field is a step in the right direction, but part of the immediate resolution has to include the utilization of the Board's emergency powers. I am asking the
Across the nation, rail companies have agreements with other companies to utilize tracks in order to improve service. My understanding is that this approach was used in 2006 right here in
Now, I have been in private business for more than 35 years, and if there is one thing that motivates a business to do better, it's competition. I believe that temporarily opening up these rail lines to other companies will bring better service, restore a reasonable rate structure, and alleviating the serious backlog that currently exits.
So, something must be done now. The financial security of this state and region depend on it. These problems have solutions, but those solutions have to come from you.
I hope you will take the steps necessary to ensuring the successful future of not only
Thank you for allowing me this time.
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