Since the Surface Transportation Board (STB) Reauthorization Act of 2015, we have seen a resurgence of new activity that will ultimately benefit shippers. From addressing issues such as public online access to Ag and Fertilizer tariffs, to proposing new competitive reciprocal switching rules, we are excited to see what changes are in store for the future. For years, AMTR has been involved in voicing shipper concerns with our clients regarding their relationship with carriers and published tariff contradictions to current statutes. The latest STB communication about the proposals to revoke certain commodity exemptions generates the most excitement for us, as those shippers would be able to address pricing and service concerns or unreasonable practices with the STB. Agencies such as the National Industrial Transportation League are spearheading the need to eliminate unnecessary or burdensome STB regulations that are outdated, such as the Stand Alone Cost (SAC) rate case procedures.
As a company grounded in transportation expertise, many of our auditors know the intimate history of regulation, then deregulation. We know the genesis of key laws and their intent. As time moves on and away from significant events, and focused transportation expertise is replaced by broader supply chain knowledge, we see memory of important concepts diminishing in the industry. We see rules being made that violate existing laws and precedence–in our minds, not out of purpose but ignorance. We are excited to see the STB re-engage and will continue to voice our concerns to them in our capacity as shipper advocates.