Transport Canada (TC) is commencing its Rail Review in response to the National Supply Chain Task Force recommendations of October 2022.

Tamara Rudge, Director General, Surface Transport Policy, has reached out to FMA and other stakeholders, with a paper describing the eight main topics that the Review will cover and is requesting feedback from stakeholders. The first seven topics address specific items in the Canada Transportation Act.

The TC message states: This fall, we are moving forward with planned engagement sessions with key freight rail stakeholders. As one of those stakeholders, we value your perspective and would like to invite you to participate in detailed discussions around key topic areas, as we consider legislative and regulatory updates for the freight rail sector.

It also states: We also invite you to share the attached documents with your members and are happy to receive written submissions from them as well.

The eight topics are:

  1. Administrative Monetary Penalties (AMPs)
  2. Contracting Out (of access to shipper protection provisions of CT Act in shipper-railway contracts)
  3. Final Offer Arbitration (FOA)
  4. Railway Annual and Winter Grain Contingency Plans
  5. Extended Regulated Interswitching
  6. Maximum Revenue Entitlement (MRE) (on grain shipments)
  7. CT Agency “Own-Motion” rail service investigations
  8. Shortline Railways – role, investment and financing

In addition to requesting written responses, Transport Canada will be holding a series of in-person “engagement sessions” with stakeholders in mid to late October. Theses meetings are scheduled for Ottawa, Calgary, Saskatoon and Winnipeg.

FMA will participate in the Ottawa meeting and would encourage FMA member companies to participate in any of the October in-person sessions. We will send out the specific dates of all four meetings once these are published by TC.

FMA will draft tentative answers to the specific questions posed on each of the eight topics for consideration by members, and will convene a Teams meeting of the FMA Rail Committee at 1300 hours, EDT, Tuesday September 26 for members to provide input to the proposed FMA responses to Transport Canada. A Teams invitation will be sent out to the membership closer to the September 26 meeting date.

Note: All FMA member employees are welcome to participate in any modal committee meetings.

The English (19 page) and French (22 page) versions of the TC Discussion Topics papers can be accessed below.