COMMUNITY CONVERSATION: Readers discuss railroad improvements

COURTESY TO THE BELLINGHAM HERALDDecember 12, 2013 

Facebook comments about a Dec. 9 story headlined "Coal, oil shipping could benefit from passenger rail improvements in Washington" by Curtis Tate of the McClatchy Washington Bureau:

Jayme Miller:

"Sounds like more taxpayer-subsidized passenger service than railroad subsidy."

Patrick Alesse:

"Coal will bring jobs and pollution. Are the jobs worth the pollution?"

Tad McCaughan:

"It's happening now! Our state, county and cities need good paying jobs! We need these terminals in our areas! We can't raise families or sustain towns on producing sunshine and rainbows.

"So here is more proof that we are just losing money! All these 'coal trains' (which coal isn't the only thing on them or is it uncovered) are already going through our areas and on the tracks to Canada. So we are paying to export this U.S. product to Canada and then overseas!"

Richard Fits:

"The Obama administration spending billions on improving the rail system, telling people it's for passenger trains and people believe it."

Deborah J. Cruz:

"Read the last line. BNSF is not paying a cent for these upgrades? They're making a huge profit and not even paying for their own equipment and materials used to make those profits?

"The jobs are going primarily to Fort Worth, Texas, not Whatcom folks. They've been shipping them in from Texas to work on the rail line upgrades. Another jobs fallacy."

Larry Illman:

"The BNSF spokesman said the they planned on spending $125 million in our state alone. Did you read the whole article?

"Frankly this is just another reason Amtrac should be shut down. A train ride to Portland and back. I think if the real costs were ever added up we would all be sickened."

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