Rail in MN

Minnesota Passenger Rail Forum shapes rail policy

The Minnesota Intercity Passenger Rail Forum brings together policymakers at the city, state and county levels in addition to organizations working on various projects to maintain existing passenger rail service and add or restore other lines. According to the MnDOT website, the Forum serves to advise MnDOT on rail projects eligible for funding through the Federal Railroad Administration's state-level programs as MnDOT works to develop a comprehensive statewide freight and passenger rail plan. In addition, the Forum advises the Commissioner of Transportation on implementation of the comprehensive statewide freight and passenger rail plan.

Members of the Forum also work to educate legislators about how passenger rail can be supported in Minnesota. Members of the Minnesota High-Speed Rail Commission help to shape policy by attending Passenger Rail Forum meetings. The Commission often adopts legislative platforms based on the Forum's platform, and Commission members help communicate the platform to legislators.

The Forum is comprised of cities, counties, regional planning organizations, railroads and other organizations. Meetings are held the first Monday of each month 10 a.m. to noon at the State Office Building next to the Capitol building in St. Paul unless otherwise specified and are open to the public. The Passenger Rail Forum website is a portal to a number of interesting resource materials, including the Comprehensive Statewide Freight and Passenger Rail Plan, information on Passenger Rail in Minnesota and the Midwest Regional Rail System.

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