Dayton Calls for Rail Tax Changes, Fees to Fund Upgrades
ST. PAUL (AP) - Gov. Mark Dayton says railroad companies need to pay more to ensure Minnesota communities can handle increased train traffic.
The Democratic governor is proposing updating how the state taxes railroad companies to include train cars and bridges. He's also calling to charge railroads an annual fee. Those changes would net about $100 million over the next two years to help upgrade railroad crossings and other safety improvements.
Dayton included unveiled those possible changes Tuesday as part of his proposed budget.
Train traffic has jumped dramatically in Minnesota due to growing crop yields and oil production from North Dakota.
Dayton says railroads should be paying for most or all of the upgrades required due to increased train traffic.