Farmers hope Transportation Modernization Act brings accountability

The Chair of the Alberta Barley Commission says the Transportation Modernization Act will make sure everyone who is involved in the handling of grain is accountable.

After a few years of temporary measures by the Federal Government to help get grain to market, the Transportation Modernization Act has been introduced to improve the national freight rail system in Canada.

Alberta Barley Chair Jason Lenz calls it a historic and revolutionary piece of legislation, which will help make sure there is accountability from the railways.

“We’re certainly happy with the introduction of reciprocal penalties in the service agreements, we have only ever asked for accountability for all the players in the grain transportation system and certainly having reciprocal penalties the shippers can use towards the railways should bring that accountability,” said Lenz.

Lenz says the act will also make sure all the players who are involved in the moving of grain are on the same page.

“A better definition of what adequate and suitable service really is, I think there has been a difference of opinion between what the railways think is adequate and suitable and what farmers and shippers think is adequate and suitable.  To have Mr. Garneau give a better definition of that should help the process as well.”

Lenz says they are now awaiting the passing of the act to see what kind of effect it will have on the industry.