Eno’s Freight Working Group Meets, Refines Recommendations

Despite being a world leader in logistics, the United States currently lacks a comprehensive national freight policy. Over the past several years there has been extensive discussion regarding the need to develop a national program of investment in freight and goods movement. Their conclusions have been strikingly similar: a national, multimodal freight policy could bring substantial benefits to the U.S. economy. While such a program has broad support in Congress and among stakeholders, this recommendation lacks a key component: funding.

The Eno Freight Working Group, co-chaired by Senator Norm Coleman, Governor Jim Florio, and Congressman Dick Gephardt, decided in 2014 to conduct research and discussions to ultimately recommend a funding mechanism for a federal freight discretionary program. While this task is daunting given the diverse perspectives within the industry, the group has made considerable progress toward a consensus recommendation.

The Freight Working Group met on October 7, 2015 in Washington DC to discuss the report and work toward framing the final recommendations. The group has not yet solidified the recommendations but they are expected to be released in the coming months.

Once a freight funding report is released, the group will turn its focus to another key issue in the freight industry: international trade. As the U.S begins the process to reauthorize the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA), it is an appropriate time to review whether and how the federal government should react to global growth and changes in trade and maritime commerce. This research will help to explore the need for potential policy changes to develop a more robust and efficient port infrastructure to accommodate global trade shifts and market demands.

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