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KION: Friends of the Rail and Trail hold rally ahead of vote for contract

KION: Friends of the Rail and Trail hold rally ahead of vote for contract

SOQUEL, Calif. – The fate of the controversial rail line in Santa Cruz County could be coming soon.

On Friday, the Friends of the Rail and Trail held a rally in support of the new contract with Progressive Rail.

The company, Progressive Rail, could be taking over the rail line if a contract is agreed on June 14th by the Regional Transportation Commission.

Before taking on passenger transportation, Progressive Rail would take on Freight Service.

The freight service is something some residents have been opposed to.

Supervisor John Leopold says freight service has been a part of that rail line for more tha 150 years. He says that’s a crucial part of the contract.

“We have a legal requirement to ensure that we have freight service. We have businesses in Watsonville that are desperately in need of this freight service. We created a two phase contract that we can put into action if we vote on it next week that will go until we make a decision after this study is done about whether we’re going to make a long term commitment to that,” says Leopold.

Note everyone is in favor of the Rail Service. The Greenway Organization has been highly opposed to the Rail and Trail service, but Friends of the Rail and Trail says their concerns have proven to be “baseless.”

Via KION 5/46. Watch the story here.

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