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BLET Virginia State Legislative Board Chairman Tim Craver reports progress on the state’s two-person crew bill. Both bills — SB 143 and HB 385 — have passed their respective chambers after their third reading earlier this month. Both are in the legislature’s “crossover” period now, meaning bills must pass in their respective chambers in order to be considered in the other chamber. Periodic updates will be provided as the Virginia’s General Assembly session unfolds over the next several weeks. Its last day in session is March 9.

BLET Colorado State Legislative Board Chairman Paul Pearson reports the state’s rail safety bill is getting positive media attention as legislators prepare to debate the measure. HB24-1030 would implement a maximum train length of 8,500 feet and require installation of more wayside defect detectors, among other rail safety improvements.

In an opinion column published by the Pueblo Chieftain, Daneya Esgar of the Colorado Board of Pueblo County Commissioners urged legislators to support the bill. Brother Pearson said the BLET endorsed Esgar when she represented Pueblo in the Colorado House of Representatives for eight years, and that she was a co-sponsor of the state’s two-person crew bill, which was signed into law. “Railroad companies are not doing enough to prevent derailments and are actively engaging in profit-driven practices that defy common sense,” Esgar wrote. Her full column is available at the Pueblo Chieftain.