A complaint filed by Montana’s Attorney General seeking to force BNSF Railway to change their incentive program for 48-car shipments back to 52-car shipments so that it works with a Surface Transportation Board formula for calculating railroad profitability could end up being money out of pocket for producers.
The Montana Grain Growers Association has expressed concern that BNSF will drop the 48-car incentive from their rate structure if the complaint is not withdrawn. The railroad is not required to offer reduced rate incentives for larger shipments. The fact that the 48-car rate is even an option is a direct result of the relationship between producers and the railroad. Montana and North Dakota are the only two states in the U.S. with that choice. Montana is the only state to regularly use it.
When the Montana Grain Growers first expressed their concerns, they were unable to get a reply from the Attorney General’s office. Attempts by the Northern Ag Network have not yet been successful.
© Northern Ag Network 2010