• CSX Acquisition of Pan Am Railways

  • Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.
Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.

Moderator: MEC407

  by johnpbarlow
There's trouble in paradise - the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division/IBT, Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen, International Association of Sheet Metal Air Rail and Transportation Workers Mechanical Division, National Conference of Firemen and Oilers 32BJ/SEIU have filed a reply to CSX et al with the STB as of 9/1/22 re: labor negotiations slog for ST agreement employees:
https://dcms-external.s3.amazonaws.com/ ... 305225.pdf

CSX and CSXT said that there are many “moving parts” involved in negotiating the Section 4 implementing agreements, and that negotiation of a fair and equitable process for dividing the current Springfield Terminal workforce and adapting current agreements to reflect future operations has presented a “difficult challenge”, “made more difficult by the current labor market”. CSX and CSXT further stated that they prefer to reach voluntary implementing agreements with the unions, but if voluntary agreements are not entered within a few weeks, arbitration under New York Dock Section 4 will be invoked.
The ARU [Allied Rail Unions - the name has been adopted by these organizations for convenient collective reference in this proceeding] agree that New York Dock notices were served and that negotiations have been held. However, the principal challenge to completion of implementing agreements with the ARU is not the many moving parts, the need to divide the current ST work force, or the current labor market. Rather, principal challenge has been the refusal of CSX and CSXT to agree to application of CSXT collective bargaining agreements to the part of the Pan Am Ry. system that is wholly owned by CSX, an currently operated by ST for CSX, that will ultimately be operated by CSXT. CSX and CSXT will not even commit to application of CSXT collective bargaining agreements by a specified date; rather they simply suggest this will occur at some future date. Since that part of the Pan AM system is now owned outright by CSX and will be operated by CSXT, the refusal to agree to application CSXT collective bargaining agreements has been an obstacle to completion of implementing agreements. It has also hindered decision-making by current ST employees with regard to employment with B&E since the employees do not know what the ultimate rates of pay, rules and working conditions will be on the part of the Pan Am Ry. system that will not be operated by B&E. If CSX and CSXT truly want to move expeditiously to effect the Transaction and B&E operation of the PAS lines, they will commit to application of CSXT agreements to the Pan Am Ry. lines not operated by B&E
For reference, here is the STB Filings link to the CSX labor negotiations status report of August 12 as referenced in the ARU reply:
https://dcms-external.s3.amazonaws.com/ ... 305137.pdf

Here's an interesting excerpt from the CSX 8/12/22 filing:
II. Transition Planning
While the New York Dock process described above has moved forward, CSX, Springfield Terminal, NSR, and B&E have engaged in extensive transition planning so that the B&E transaction can be completed very soon after the labor implementing agreements have been reached. CSX, Springfield Terminal and B&E hold weekly meetings to discuss the transition of PAS operations from Springfield Terminal to B&E. The carriers have discussed next year’s capital plan, including the procurement of assets such as rail and ties. Accountants for both Springfield Terminal and B&E recently met at Springfield Terminal’s headquarters in North Billerica, Mass. to discuss transition of PAS accounting to B&E. A number of operational issues have been studied and discussed, including dispatching, customer service, trip calling for employees, and other details. The respective technology departments for CSX/Springfield Terminal and B&E have started addressing transitional issues to ensure a smooth and integrated transition. The carriers have also inventoried and considered the disposition of equipment, supplies, and other assets currently owned and used by Springfield Terminal to operate PAS
  by Gilbert B Norman
Mr. Barlow, we HAVE TO expect that Chessie would try to have "Timmy's Union Busting stunt", otherwise known as Springfield Terminal, continue to apply to those lines identified as PAS. But I think Chessie knows her position is weak and potentially dangerous to labor stability elsewhere on her System. To my knowledge, she and her Agreement employees have adopted uniform agreements applicable throughout. There are no longer B&O, C&O, SAL, ACL, L&N, and NYC Agreements applicable on her property. So it follows that the existing ST Agreements will fold.

Now I'm not sure how New York Dock will apply. My understanding is that there need be "Adversely Affected Employees", generally meaning that exercise of seniority will only result in a lower rated position and in a location beyond a reasonable distance (I think 50 miles) from that which has been abolished. NYD provisions would apply regarding any difference in pay rates and relocation expenses.

But with ST being as understaffed as is reported to be the case, "RELO" provisions could not be applied. So far as "Adversely Affected" regarding rates of pay and working conditions, it is inevitable that Chessie, as I noted earlier, will have to accept that continuing the ST Agreements is simply not sustainable.

But in the meantime, the lawyers have their taximeter flags down and they are ticking away; so why rush things?
  by newpylong
johnpbarlow wrote: Sat Sep 03, 2022 5:16 am There's trouble in paradise - the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division/IBT, Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen, International Association of Sheet Metal Air Rail and Transportation Workers Mechanical Division, National Conference of Firemen and Oilers 32BJ/SEIU have filed a reply to CSX et al with the STB as of 9/1/22 re: labor negotiations slog for ST agreement employees:
https://dcms-external.s3.amazonaws.com/ ... 305225.pdf
I've been stating for months that there have been labor issues in regards to PAS and the B&E takeover is tentatively scheduled for EOY.
  by johnpbarlow
Interesting September 4, 2022 Bangor Daily News article: "More freight trains are rolling through Maine as cargo ship traffic ramps up in New Brunswick"

Earlier this summer, Florida-based CSX acquired Pan Am Railways, extending its reach from Illinois and Florida through New England to Bangor and Mattawamkeag. Prior to the purchase, Pan Am had applied for a federal grant to help cover half of the estimated $42 million cost of rebuilding its line between Waterville and Mattawamkeag, a distance of about 110 miles, which will allow the line to carry heavier and longer trains from Saint John, according to online trade publication Atlantic Northeast Rails & Ports.

In addition, CSX and the Federal Railroad Administration are splitting the bill on $35 million worth of improvements on its line between Yarmouth and Waterville. The company has not yet started upgrading the line from Waterville through Bangor to Mattawamkeag, but a CSX spokeswoman said that work is expected to begin next year.
https://www.bangordailynews.com/2022/0 ... oam40zk0w/
Last edited by johnpbarlow on Mon Sep 05, 2022 12:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by BandA
When does the ST contract expire?
  by newpylong
Which contract?
  by johnpbarlow
Are ST engineers and conductors part of the nationwide negotiation? Could they go on strike 9/16 if no agreement is reached? Even if not there wouldn’t be much if any interchange traffic to move.
  by Gilbert B Norman
BandA wrote: Sun Sep 04, 2022 8:21 pm When does the ST contract expire?
Mr. B&A, Agreements under the Railway Labor Act NEVER Expire.

If a party desires to change a provision in the existing, they serve Notice on the other under Section 6 of the Act, and from there the collective bargaining process begins.

Now where the vernacular such as a "two year contract" can be understood to apply is that included in Agreements, especially those agreed to at Committee level ("National handling"), is a provision that no party will serve Notice for provisions such as rates of pay until a specified period has elapsed.
  by markhb
I'd like to be sure I understand this:
  • "The Unions" want to have the workers who will be continuing on with CSX in the non-PAS portion of the system to be brought under the same contracts that the existing CSX employees have; CSX's position is "Whoa, now, not so fast, let's think about this.... for as long as possible...."
  • The Unions can't or won't finalize the terms with B&E for PAS until the CSX contracts are finalized.
  • Arbitration under the rules established in "New York Dock" has been requested for one or both of the above matters.
Personally, although I'm neither a railroad worker nor a labor lawyer, I can't see CSX prevailing on that first one in any fair proceeding.
  by newpylong
Correct, they are saying how can employees decide if they want to go to B&E (PAS) or stay on CSX (of which they are an employee currently w/the ST) if they do not know what the agreements will be like in the long run.

There is merit to the argument. However, railroaders are known to drive ungodly amounts for an ungodly small difference in money. You'd think the sensible thing to do would be to just go to whatever side is closest to where you live and get more time at home and less commuting. IMHO a no brainer except for those who live around Ayer.
  by johnpbarlow
Trains Magazine on-line article of 9/7/22: "Waste shippers complain about CSX service in the Northeast"

https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews ... northeast/

The National Waste & Recycling Association, a trade group representing 70% of the private sector’s waste and recycling market, told the Surface Transportation Board that its members prefer to reach commercial solutions with their rail carriers.

“However, the service issues that our member companies are raising indicate that the problem is a network problem affecting the entire northeast region of the country. For example, in Boston, NWRA members are unable to load rail cars due to ongoing service issues involving the delivery of rail cars. In the meantime, railcars loaded with waste are waiting to be moved out by the railroad. Another example, in Connecticut and New York, rail operations are being negatively impacted due to the excessive backlog of cars waiting to switch at CSX’s Selkirk Yard in Albany, N.Y.,” the group’s CEO, Darrell K. Smith, wrote in a Sept. 1 letter to the STB.
Crew shortages have been the root cause of the service issues experienced in certain regions of CSX’s network, including Selkirk where we have seen an unusual surge in vacation entitlements,” she adds. “The staffing shortages in Selkirk should ease now that we are past the Labor Day weekend; however, we took the proactive step of sending a number of temporary relocations to provide additional support which has helped the situation there. CSX has also modified how waste traffic is blocked in order to enhance service for those shippers at Selkirk.”
A combination of layoffs, crew shortages, changes to remote-control switching jobs, and CSX’s takeover of New England regional Pan Am Railways has created congestion at Selkirk, SMART-TD Local Chairman Joshua Therrien wrote in an Aug. 22 letter to STB Chairman Martin J. Oberman.
Here's the letter the President/CEO of the NWRA sent to the STB Chairman: https://www.stb.gov/wp-content/uploads/ ... 1-2022.pdf
  by QB 52.32
In light of a planned $2-3b. investment in passenger rail bringing 14 additional passenger trains moving at increased MAS up to 89mph Springfield-Boston and how CSX will/could use PAR/PAS at least because of this, in consideration of a rumored renewed Clinton connection and brought over from the "Track Upgrades and Infrastructure" thread:
taracer wrote: Thu Aug 25, 2022 4:25 pm Maybe I'm not understanding but are you saying that CSX will re-route traffic off the B&A, which they wholly own, for PAS jointly owned with NS, because of a few passenger trains? The B&A used to handle twice as many trains than today just 15 years ago.

Remember that there is no easy way to get to PAS from Selkirk, and a lot of B&A traffic is coming off the River Line from the south. So it can't really be classified someplace west of Selkirk without a long detour. Selkirk is the hub, they said that themselves in the STB presentations.
My take is a "probably generally low, but not a no" chance that CSX will use PAS to some additional extent ranging from blocks to trains to classes of traffic to cap or re-locate and reduce B&A traffic east of Springfield, if not simply as a strategic hedge. The plan will bring to the B&A Springfield-Worcester the near-same volume and mix of passenger, moving at higher MAS, and freight trains as existed east of Worcester, though with the added important existence of premium intermodal service that wasn't there east of Worcester, when the big deal was done to reduce and re-locate freight traffic. Additionally, CSX will now be constrained in adding trains with a good amount of the new tripling of route-mile double track, ~55% increase in track-miles, and schedule-window capacity consumed by the ~33% increase in total trains with a ~250% increase in passenger trains moving at ~100% increase in speed differential vs. the early 2000's high-water traffic mark.

To the extent this new reality does or does not prompt CSX use of PAS and in light of issues that to some extent would have to be overcome, surely the addition of high-speed Springfield-Worcester, not out of the question over time, would markedly increase the potential within the range of possibilities in how CSX's half ownership in PAS might provide strategic benefit. And, surely NS would strategically benefit from any public infrastructure investment into PAS that's unlikely outside a bigger deal directly or indirectly involving CSX and E-W Passenger Rail. As I see it, the pieces are there on the chessboard, how they are played remains to be seen.
BobbyT wrote: Thu Aug 25, 2022 4:31 pm I don't think CSX has any interest whatsoever in running their own freight over the old B&M/PAS route and I think they've been pretty clear about that. The problem with trying to push Eastern MA business up to say points south of Portland is that now you're dealing with the MBTA on multiple routes, Amtrak, PAS, more of your own freight activity and lots of single track. I think they will continue to use Framingham for their existing Eastern MA network similar to how Lawrence will be utilized as their central yard on the north side.
Just have to look around past and present, understand the range of re-development pressure across a number of CSX and customer facilities Worcester & east, including in Framingham, over the planning horizon that go to reduction but not elimination of freight traffic, and consider the planned addition of 14 new passenger trains, all moving at 69-89 MAS east of Worcester and Springfield to get to how PAR territory broadly defined by Barbers, Wilmington, Portland and Concord benefits CSX . In their public STB filings CSX wrote, "The efficient operations via Barbers Jct. will take pressure off the transportation network around Boston". And, even in terms of the prospect for growth, the Municipal Solid Waste market provides a good case study in the recent limits and results facing CSX Worcester and east that didn't exist 10 years ago.
  by newpylong
How does this keep coming up?

CSX has zero plans to move tonnage off of the B&A to the PAS EXCEPT for local Ayer Switching District traffic. This is only being interchanged in Ayer now because the ST is the common carrier for both PAR and PAS, so it works. Once B&E takes over, any car from CSX for a PAS customer will come via Rotterdam per existing routing gateways.

To go one step further, CSX fully plans to divest its share of PAS in the near future once the dust settles.

Could this change? I guess... but when the most senior folks in Operations at Jacksonville are saying this, kinda gotta go with it vs conjecture.
  by johnpbarlow
The Commonwealth of MA throws a few bones to CSX and a some of its rail shippers: "Baker-Polito Administration Announces over $3 Million in Industrial Rail Access Program (IRAP) Grants"

Excerpts relevant to CSX:
Old Boston Road Recycling ($500,000)
The grant will support new track construction at a recycling facility in Wilbraham. The additional track will increase reliability and the volume of freight rail shipments, eliminating 10,000 truck trips annually.

Arrowhead Environmental Partners ($500,000)
The grant will support renovations to the company’s yard in Ayer, which will increase reliability and volume of freight rail shipments, eliminating 5,600 truck trips annually, and creating 4 jobs.

CSX ($499,000)
The grant will support the Everett Coke Works Rehabilitation Project, which will aid the continued use of freight rail service to shippers in Everett and increase both the reliability and volume of freight rail shipments, eliminating 1,350 truck trips annually.

Broco Energy ($334,289)
The grant will support improvements to the 81 Hale Street Yard rail facilities in Haverhill, which will increase the volume of freight rail shipments and eliminate 3,200 truck trips annually.

Ice Cube Maritime ($361,669)
The grant will help support railway and unloading facility upgrades at a freight rail shipper in New Bedford, which will increase the volume of freight rail shipments, eliminate 400 truck trips annually, and create 5 new jobs.
https://www.mass.gov/news/baker-polito- ... rap-grants
  by bostontrainguy
It will be interesting to see what the "increase in freight volume" means for the Coke Works area. It looks like the amount of freight in that area is dwindling as different rail-served businesses close their doors and sell out (e.g., Boston Market Terminal). Also there is pressure by the city of Everett to redevelop the area as the tank farm is replaced. There is the unique opportunity to build a rail-on-dock facility at the old tank farm piers but that is wishful thinking of course. Is there an Eimskip type shipping company interested? Maybe something is happening we don't know about? This will be fun to watch.
  • 1
  • 272
  • 273
  • 274
  • 275
  • 276
  • 291