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Published on Friday, April 17, 2015

Both chambers pass oil train bills

Both chambers have passed oil train bills that move them closer together on addressing issues around oil transport. This shows motivation from both sides to do something on this issue this session. There are still several outstanding issues between the chambers, these include:

  • Requiring that railroads develop contingency plans and provide proof of financial responsibility. (Included in House approach, not Senate)
  • Extending the barrel tax to pipelines - both chambers extend the tax to railroads, only the House extends it to pipelines.
  • How, when, and to whom advance notice of oil shipments must be provided.

The good news is that both proposals provide grants to emergency responders for oil and hazardous materials spill response and firefighting equipment. They both also increase the number of Utilities & Transportation Commission inspectors to improve the safety of crossings and the transport of hazardous materials.

If this issue is important to your community, now is the time to communicate with your legislator and urge them to pass a final bill this session.

Links to both bills can be found here: E2SHB 5057 and ESHB 1449.

Categories: Transportation