2014 Session

Budget Amendments - HB30 (Committee Approved)

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Grade Crossing Improvements (language only)

Item 427 #4h

Item 427 #4h

Transportation, Secretary of

Page 372, after line 43, insert:
"K. 1. The Commonwealth Transportation Board is directed to utilize available revenues in the Rail Enhancement Fund to develop a plan for the development and improvement of rail facilities in Suffolk that serve port facilities in the Commonwealth.  Such study shall examine potential routes for cargo trains serving the ports that enhance access to both Class I and short line railroads.  In the interest of public safety and to demonstrate public benefit, the studies and plans shall seek to minimize disruptions to vehicular travel within the city and surrounding localities.  It is the sense of the General Assembly that routes that minimize environmental impacts to avoid extensive permitting and that utilize and connect to existing and/or abandoned rail infrastructure to allow for the efficient storage and staging of trains are preferable.  The studies and plan development shall be conducted by the Department of Rail and Public Transportation in cooperation with the Department of Transportation, the Virginia Port Authority, and surrounding localities that could be impacted by the development of new or improved rail facilities.  
2. Upon completion of the studies and preliminary engineering for potential alternative routes, the Department of Rail and Public Transportation may utilize Rail Enhancement monies necessary to develop or improve the facilities identified in the preferred alternative.  A local contribution, as determined by the Board, shall be required of the City and any other local, regional or private partners as part of the application process for grants from the Fund and projects undertaken to improve ingress and egress of rail traffic from the Ports of Virginia may be exempted from the non-public match requirement included in § 33.1-221.1:1.1 D or negotiated at a lower rate.
3.  The Commonwealth Transportation Board is further directed to utilize the amounts made available for rail grade separation projects in Item 446 of House Bill 29, 2014 Session of the General Assembly, and any additional unallocated amounts from the Rail Enhancement Fund or from the federal railway-highway crossings program to undertake the two grade separation projects identified in the Port of Virginia Gateway Project and the Suffolk Rail Impact Study on Nansemond Parkway."

(This amendment authorizes the CTB to utilize rail enhancement funds to develop plans to improve rail facilities that service the Virginia Port Authority facilities.)