Ms. Rosalind A.
Deputy General Counsel
Department of Transportation
400 Seventh Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20590
Dear Ms. Knapp:
On June 4, 2001, the Department of Transportation (DOT) submitted
a Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) draft interim final rule
titled "U.S. Locational Requirement for Dispatching of U.S. Rail
Operations" to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review
under Executive Order No. 12866. This interim final rule would,
in general, require that all railroad operations dispatching that
occurs in the U.S. be performed in the U.S.
We have raised some concerns with this rulemaking, particularly
with regard to how this rule might better address U.S. obligations
under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The FRA responded
to these concerns by committing to review some of the draft regulatory
language and further explain why the agency believes the rule is
consistent with NAFTA. While we are pleased with the FRA's consideration
of our comments and the agency's willingness to try to address our
concerns, we believe that resolution of these concerns will take
some additional time.
For these reasons, I am returning the above mentioned rule to the
Department for your reconsideration, in accordance with Executive
Order 12866. Our staff is available for further discussion with
you on the concerns that have been raised as you work to revise
this rule. We look forward to continuing to work with you on this
and other important rulemaking efforts.
John D. Graham
Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs