Railroads serving Wisconsin report record income; some customers are not as happy. The railroads say they're investing in upgrades that will improve service, but spokesman John Sumi with Badger Consumers United for Rail Equity says they'd like to be sure. “We're concerned that the investments that the railroads make, serve the needs of Wisconsin customers and businesses in the state,” says Sumi, adding that Badger CURE is suggesting Congress repeal the railroads' antitrust exemption.
But state Rail Commissioner, Rodney Kreunen, says for too many years the industry in Wisconsin has been strapped for adequate returns; “now that the railroads are in a better position, nd they sure have used it to increase rates, they're putting the money back into the system.”
Kreunen says Burlington Northern Santa Fe, Union Pacific and Canadian National are all making improvements, while Badger CURE's Sumi says the utility and paper industries are feeling the squeeze of higher rates.