Introduced Version House Resolution 39 History

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hr39 intr

(By Delegate Staggers)

Proclaiming the importance of rail to West Virginia and supporting the continuation of balanced federal rail regulation.

Whereas, Railroads have long fueled the economic and social development of West Virginia, beginning in the 1850s when rail connected West Virginia to the nation and extending to the present day. Railroads made it possible for West Virginia to power the nation with the delivery of coal which has fueled business and industry and provided heat and light for the homes of millions of Americans for over a century. Railroads today directly employ over 5,000 West Virginians in good paying jobs and support thousands of other jobs in countless other sectors of our economy; and
Whereas, Federal bureaucratic intrusion nearly decimated railroads in the 1960s and 1970s to the detriment of the people of West Virginia and the nation, but Congressman Harley Staggers of West Virginia authorized legislation, known as the Staggers Rail Act of 1980 and signed into law by President Jimmy Carter in 1980, which reformed regulations on rail and held railroads accountable while allowing them to grow and serve the people of West Virginia and all Americans. This Act made it possible for railroads of today to become the safest, most fuel efficient, cost effective and environmentally friendly means of moving freight. A train can move a ton of freight four hundred twenty-three miles on a single gallon of fuel and one train can carry the load of two hundred eighty trucks or more; and
Whereas, Continued expansion and revitalization of rail will reduce our dependence on foreign oil, lessen emissions of greenhouse gases, create jobs, lower transportation costs and improve the quality of life for all West Virginians and all Americans; therefore, be it
Resolved by the House of Delegates:
That the State of West Virginia supports preservation of today's balance rail regulations which hold rail accountable while allowing it to expand to meet the nations's needs; and, be it
Further Resolved, That the State of West Virginia supports federal policies, including investment tax incentives, that would help expand and revitalize West Virginia and the nation's freight rail system; and, be it
Further Resolved, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates forward a certified copy of this resolution to the members of the West Virginia delegation in Congress.
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