JoeG wrote:If a piece of freight railroad is so maxed out that it can't supply one slot each way for Amtrak, then the railroad needs to increase its capacity. This should be encouraged by US tax policy. Meanwhile, if an Amtrak train actually displaces a freight, Amtrak should have to pay the value of running that freight.
The Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution, made applicable to the States through the Fourteenth Amendment, Chicago, B. & Q. R. Co. v. Chicago, 166 U.S. 226, 239 (1897), provides: "[N]or shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." [n.5] One of theprincipal purposes of the Takings Clause is "to bar Government from forcing some people alone to bear public burdens which, in all fairness and justice, should be borne by the public as a whole." Armstrong v. United States, 364 U.S. 40, 49 (1960). Without question, had the city simply required petitioner to dedicate a strip of land along Fanno Creek for public use, rather than conditioning the grant of her permit to redevelop her property on such a dedication, a taking would have occurred. Nollan, supra, at 831. Such public access would deprive petitioner of the right to exclude others, "one of the most essential sticks in the bundle of rights that are commonly characterized as property." Kaiser Aetna v. United States, 444 U.S. 164, 176 (1979).
(4) Amtrak is the only logical entity for running the NEC. The suggestion that the states along the NEC form compacts just won't work. The 2-state Port Authority of NJ & NY often grinds to a halt because of disputes between only 2 states. For why a compact with many states will fail, look back in American history at the Articles of Confederation, whose failure led to the US Constitution. The LD network is necessary for Amtrak's continued existence; see Item 1).
Gilbert B Norman wrote:....my reasons for being "less than an LD advocate' are not the wasted $300M; I could care less about that as it is simply a minnow in the $3T ocean. My objection to the LD's is that they deprive the roads of needed capacity, even on the "vaunted BNSF", to do what they are out there to do - move freight. Track capacioty was a non-issue on A-Day; hardly the case today. Here is in pertinent part, a response made by Mr. HSR Fan to my thoughts:
I think the public good should come before the private railroads' desire to move freight. The LD trains are not that much of a burden, and lest we forget, the private carriers were let off the hook for passenger service when Amtrak was created in exchange for guaranteeing trackage rightsLet our mature and respectful discussion begin.
“Many host railroads have structured
their operations to give Amtrak trains the
preference required by…law, while successfully
conducting their own operations.
Some hosts indicate that when Amtrak
is running on time, it is a sign their network
is functioning well. Operating
Amtrak is not a zero-sum game where
other traffic must suffer if Amtrak does
—Amtrak Acting President and CEO David
J. Hughes, in August 17 letters to Surface
Transportation Board Chairman
Charles D. Nottingham
Mr. Toy wrote: I think the idea that Amtrak acts as the "canary in the coal mine" to some railroads deserves further research to determine if that is really the case. This was obviously written by someone with a particular agenda to advance, but assuming he isn't lying or stretching the truth too much, what does this imply for the current discussion?
JoeG wrote:What do you find objectionable in what I said?
VPayne wrote:Why do we debate supposed loss to investor owned railroads when the government itself is taking away the best, high margin, freight through the cross subsidy of highway freight from automobile users and the general fund? What kind of capital investment could the investor owned railroads provide if that $20 billion in general fund subsidy to highway ROW's did not exist?
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