Washington Update

On January 12th, the Senate confirmed Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) nominee Amit Bose to lead the agency in a bipartisan vote. Bose has been acting as the agency's administrator while serving as Deputy Administrator and awaiting a confirmation vote. Once his confirmation was official, REMSA released the following statement: 
“REMSA congratulates Amit Bose on his bipartisan confirmation by the US Senate this afternoon to be FRA Administrator. His experience with rail projects and at multiple levels of government will benefit the administration and its stakeholders. We look forward to working with him and the FRA on issues that impact rail suppliers and the maintenance-of-way industry."
Also this month, Democratic nominee for the Surface Transportation Board Karen Hedlund was confirmed by the Senate via unanimous consent, succeeding board member Ann Begeman, whose second term expired in 2020 but was able to remain in place for up to one year until her replacement was confirmed.
The Supreme Court struck down OSHA's vaccine mandate for employers with more than 100 employees on January 13th in a 6-3 ruling, noting that the labor secretary lacked the authority for such a broad requirement. 
The Department of Transportation has released its Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the RAISE grants program and intends to provide full details about the opportunity by January 30th. Interested applicants can check their website at www.transportation.gov/RAISEgrants for updates.