Florida Senate - 2017                              CS for SB 386
       By the Committee on Transportation; and Senators Mayfield and
       596-02455-17                                           2017386c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to high-speed passenger rail; creating
    3         s. 341.601, F.S.; providing a short title; creating s.
    4         341.602, F.S.; providing definitions; creating s.
    5         341.603, F.S.; providing legislative intent; creating
    6         s. 341.604, F.S.; providing applicability; creating s.
    7         341.605, F.S.; providing powers and duties of the
    8         Florida Department of Transportation; authorizing the
    9         department to regulate railroads where not federally
   10         preempted; authorizing the department to collect
   11         information from relevant parties; requiring the
   12         department to keep certain records; requiring the
   13         department, in coordination with the Florida Division
   14         of Emergency Management, to offer certain response
   15         training for accidents involving passengers or
   16         hazardous materials under certain circumstances;
   17         requiring the department to adopt rules; creating s.
   18         341.606, F.S.; providing reporting requirements for
   19         certain railroad companies; requiring the department
   20         to publish certain information on its website;
   21         requiring the department, in coordination with the
   22         Federal Railroad Administration and other necessary
   23         entities, to adopt certain rules; specifying that
   24         reporting requirements are for informational purposes
   25         only and not to be used to economically regulate a
   26         railroad company; creating s. 341.607, F.S.; providing
   27         minimum safety standards for a high-speed passenger
   28         rail system; requiring certain railroad companies to
   29         comply with certain federal laws and regulations;
   30         providing safety technology requirements for certain
   31         railroad companies; providing certain requirements for
   32         railroad companies before operating a high-speed
   33         passenger rail system; creating s. 341.608, F.S.;
   34         requiring construction, maintenance, and repair of
   35         certain infrastructure by certain railroad companies;
   36         specifying requirements for certain roadbed
   37         modifications; providing for construction; creating s.
   38         341.609, F.S.; requiring the department’s railroad
   39         inspectors, in accordance with a specified program, to
   40         meet certain certification requirements and to
   41         coordinate their activities with those of federal
   42         inspectors in the state in compliance with certain
   43         federal regulations; requiring the inspectors to
   44         report the results of their inspections, subject to
   45         certain requirements; requiring the reports to be made
   46         available on the department’s website unless they are
   47         deemed confidential; creating s. 341.611, F.S.;
   48         requiring the department to adopt rules that identify
   49         standards for conducting field surveys of certain rail
   50         corridors; providing requirements for the field
   51         survey; requiring the department to hold certain
   52         public meetings; requiring certain railroad companies
   53         to construct and maintain fences under certain
   54         circumstances; providing fencing requirements;
   55         providing that a railroad company is liable for all
   56         damages arising from its failure to construct or
   57         maintain the fence, under certain circumstances;
   58         creating s. 341.612, F.S.; providing that a railroad
   59         company operating a high-speed passenger rail system
   60         is solely responsible for all rail corridor
   61         improvements or upgrades relating to its operation and
   62         safety; providing that a local government or the state
   63         is not responsible for certain costs unless it
   64         expressly assumes responsibility in writing; creating
   65         s. 341.613, F.S.; authorizing the department to bring
   66         certain actions for the assessment and collection of
   67         civil penalties or for injunctive relief, in addition
   68         to any administrative action; creating s. 341.614,
   69         F.S.; establishing jurisdiction to enforce specified
   70         provisions; requiring penalties for violations of
   71         specified provisions to be imposed upon the railroad
   72         company that commits such violations; providing an
   73         effective date.
   75  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   77         Section 1. Section 341.601, Florida Statutes, is created to
   78  read:
   79         341.601Short title.—Sections 341.601-341.614 shall be
   80  known as the “Florida High-Speed Passenger Rail Safety Act.”
   81         Section 2. Section 341.602, Florida Statutes, is created to
   82  read:
   83         341.602Definitions.—As used in this act, the term:
   84         (1)“Department” means the Florida Department of
   85  Transportation.
   86         (2)“Freight railroad carrier” means any person, railroad
   87  corporation, or other legal entity in the business of providing
   88  freight rail transportation.
   89         (3)“Governmental entity” means the state, any of its
   90  agencies, or any of its political subdivisions.
   91         (4)“High-speed passenger rail system” means any new
   92  intrastate passenger rail system that operates or proposes to
   93  operate its passenger trains at a maximum speed in excess of 80
   94  miles per hour on or after July 1, 2017.
   95         (5)“Pedestrian grade crossing” means a separate sidewalk
   96  or pathway where pedestrians, but not vehicles, cross railroad
   97  tracks.
   98         (6)“Public railroad-highway grade crossing” means a
   99  location at which a railroad track is crossed at grade by a
  100  public road.
  101         (7)“Rail corridor” means a linear, continuous strip of
  102  real property that is used for rail service. The term includes
  103  the corridor and structures essential to railroad operations,
  104  including the land, buildings, improvements, rights-of-way,
  105  easements, rail lines, rail beds, guideway structures, switches,
  106  yards, parking facilities, power relays, switching houses, rail
  107  stations, any ancillary development, and any other facilities or
  108  equipment used for the purposes of construction, operation, or
  109  maintenance of a railroad that provides rail service.
  110         (8)“Railroad company” means any individual, partnership,
  111  association, corporation, or company and its respective lessees,
  112  trustees, or receivers, appointed by a court, which develops or
  113  provides ground transportation that runs on rails, including,
  114  but not limited to any of the following:
  115         (a)A high-speed passenger rail system.
  116         (b)A freight railroad carrier.
  117         (c)A company that owns a rail corridor.
  118         Section 3. Section 341.603, Florida Statutes, is created to
  119  read:
  120         341.603Legislative intent.—It is the intent of the
  121  Legislature to:
  122         (1)Encourage the creation of safe and cost-effective
  123  transportation options for this state’s residents and visitors,
  124  including high-speed passenger rail systems.
  125         (2)Promote and enhance the safety of high-speed passenger
  126  rail systems operating within the state to protect the health,
  127  safety, and welfare of the public.
  128         Section 4. Section 341.604, Florida Statutes, is created to
  129  read:
  130         341.604Applicability.—This act applies to any railroad
  131  company operating a high-speed passenger rail system, or any
  132  railroad company that allows a high-speed passenger rail system
  133  to operate on or within its rail corridor.
  134         Section 5. Section 341.605, Florida Statutes, is created to
  135  read:
  136         341.605Powers and duties of the department; rules.—
  137         (1)The department may regulate railroad companies in this
  138  state insofar as such authority is not preempted by federal laws
  139  or regulations.
  140         (2)The department may obtain from any party all necessary
  141  information to enable it to perform its duties and carry out the
  142  requirements set forth in this act.
  143         (3)The department shall keep a record of all of its
  144  findings, decisions, determinations, and investigations carried
  145  out under this act.
  146         (4)If a high-speed passenger rail system operates within
  147  the same rail corridor or on the same set of tracks as another
  148  railroad company that transports hazardous materials, the
  149  department, in coordination with the Florida Division of
  150  Emergency Management, shall offer the local communities and
  151  local emergency services located along the rail corridor
  152  training specifically designed to help them respond to an
  153  accident involving rail passengers or hazardous materials.
  154         (5)The department shall adopt rules, pursuant to the
  155  requirements of chapter 120, to administer this section.
  156         Section 6. Section 341.606, Florida Statutes, is created to
  157  read:
  158         341.606Reporting requirements.—
  159         (1)A railroad company operating a high-speed passenger
  160  rail system shall furnish to the department a copy of the
  161  accident reports filed with the Federal Railroad Administration
  162  for each train accident that occurs within the rail corridor.
  163         (2)The department shall annually publish on its official
  164  website a report that discloses all of the fatalities, injuries,
  165  and accidents during the reporting timeframe which have occurred
  166  within a rail corridor where a high-speed passenger rail system
  167  operates.
  168         (3)A railroad company that transports liquefied natural
  169  gas on the same tracks or within the same rail corridor as a
  170  high-speed passenger rail system within the state must submit an
  171  annual report to the department containing:
  172         (a)All insurance carried by the railroad company which
  173  covers any losses resulting from a reasonable worst-case
  174  unplanned release of liquefied natural gas.
  175         (b)Coverage amounts and limitations, and other conditions
  176  of the insurance identified in paragraph (a).
  177         (c)The average and largest liquefied natural gas train,
  178  measured in metric tons, operated in the state by the railroad
  179  company in the previous calendar year.
  180         (d)Information sufficient to demonstrate the railroad
  181  company’s ability to pay the costs of remediating a reasonable
  182  worst-case unplanned release of liquefied natural gas,
  183  including, but not limited to, insurance, reserve accounts,
  184  letters of credit, or other financial instruments or resources
  185  on which the company can rely to pay all such costs. The
  186  department, in coordination with the Federal Railroad
  187  Administration and other public and private entities, as
  188  necessary, shall develop rules to determine applicable criteria
  189  for a reasonable worst-case unplanned release of liquefied
  190  natural gas.
  191         (4)All reporting requirements are for informational
  192  purposes only and may not be used to economically regulate the
  193  railroad company.
  194         Section 7. Section 341.607, Florida Statutes, is created to
  195  read:
  196         341.607Minimum safety standards for high-speed passenger
  197  rail.—
  198         (1)A railroad company operating a high-speed passenger
  199  rail system shall comply with all of the federal laws and
  200  regulations administered by the Federal Railroad Administration.
  201         (2)A railroad company operating a high-speed passenger
  202  rail system must install safety technology that has been
  203  approved by the Federal Railroad Administration. Safety
  204  technology at a minimum shall include positive train control and
  205  remote health monitoring.
  206         (3)Before operating a high-speed passenger rail system, a
  207  railroad company shall also:
  208         (a)Install or realign crossing gates, including those at
  209  severely skewed, acute-angled locations identified by either the
  210  department or the Federal Railroad Administration, so the gates
  211  are parallel to the tracks and in accordance with the most
  212  recent edition of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices
  213  published by the Federal Highway Administration and adopted by
  214  the state pursuant to s. 316.0745.
  215         (b)Equip all automatic public railroad-highway grade
  216  crossing warning systems with remote health monitoring
  217  technology capable of:
  218         1.Detecting false activations;
  219         2.Detecting other crossing signal malfunctions; and
  220         3.Notifying the train dispatcher and crossing signal
  221  maintenance personnel whenever such a malfunction is detected.
  222         (c)Construct and maintain fencing in accordance with s.
  223  341.611.
  224         Section 8. Section 341.608, Florida Statutes, is created to
  225  read:
  226         341.608Maintenance and repair of roadbeds, tracks,
  227  culverts, and certain streets and sidewalks.—
  228         (1)A railroad company that constructs or operates a high
  229  speed passenger rail system on tracks that intersect with a
  230  public street or highway at grade shall, at its sole cost and
  231  expense, construct and thereafter maintain, renew, and repair
  232  all railroad roadbed, track, and railroad culverts within the
  233  confines of the public street or highway, and the streets or
  234  pedestrian grade crossings lying between the rails and for a
  235  distance outside the rails of 1 foot beyond the end of the
  236  railroad ties.
  237         (2)If the railroad company that constructs or operates a
  238  high-speed passenger rail system is required to install safety
  239  improvements that modify the width of a roadbed, it is
  240  responsible for ensuring that the impacted roadbed meets the
  241  department’s transition requirements as set forth in the most
  242  recent edition of the department’s Design Standards and the
  243  Manual of Uniform Minimum Standards for Design, Construction,
  244  and Maintenance for Streets and Highways.
  245         (3)This section does not impair any existing contractual
  246  agreements between the railroad company operating the high-speed
  247  passenger rail system and a governmental entity within the
  248  state.
  249         Section 9. Section 341.609, Florida Statutes, is created to
  250  read:
  251         341.609Safety inspections and inspectors.—
  252         (1)In accordance with the State Rail Safety Participation
  253  Program, which is designed to promote safety in all areas of
  254  railroad operations to reduce deaths, injuries, and damage to
  255  railroad property, the department’s railroad inspectors must be
  256  certified by the Federal Railroad Administration and shall
  257  coordinate their activities with those of federal inspectors in
  258  the state in compliance with 49 C.F.R. part 212 and any other
  259  federal regulations governing state safety participation.
  260         (2)Unless otherwise confidential under state or federal
  261  law, the department’s railroad inspectors shall report in
  262  writing the results of their inspections in the manner and on
  263  forms prescribed by the department. These reports shall be made
  264  available to the public on the department’s website.
  265         Section 10. Section 341.611, Florida Statutes, is created
  266  to read:
  267         341.611Fencing and separation requirements to protect the
  268  public.—
  269         (1)The department shall adopt rules that identify
  270  standards for conducting field surveys of the rail corridor
  271  being used by a high-speed passenger rail system. The field
  272  surveys must indicate areas where fencing is necessary for the
  273  health, safety, and welfare of the public.
  274         (2)At a minimum, the field survey should identify
  275  pedestrian traffic generators, such as nearby schools and parks,
  276  and signs of current pedestrian traffic that crosses the
  277  railroad tracks. The department must hold at least one public
  278  meeting in each community where new or substantially modified
  279  fencing is proposed before designs and plans for such fencing
  280  are finalized.
  281         (3)Once it has been determined that a fence is necessary
  282  to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the surrounding
  283  community, the railroad company operating a high-speed passenger
  284  rail system shall construct and maintain the fence on both sides
  285  of its railroad tracks sufficient to prevent intrusion.
  286         (4)The fencing must be placed 1 foot inside the edge of
  287  the railroad company’s right-of-way.
  288         (5)The fencing must be maintained by the railroad company
  289  operating a high-speed passenger rail system, unless maintenance
  290  is specifically addressed in a separate contract with a property
  291  owner or local government.
  292         (6)The fence must be at least 4 1/2 feet in height.
  293  Ornamental fencing must be used within urban areas. Chain-link
  294  fencing may be used in locations outside of urban areas.
  295         (7)If a railroad company neglects to construct or maintain
  296  a required fence, the railroad company is liable for all damages
  297  arising from its failure to construct or maintain such fence
  298  unless another entity is responsible for maintenance under
  299  subsection (5).
  300         Section 11. Section 341.612, Florida Statutes, is created
  301  to read:
  302         341.612Operation of a high-speed passenger rail system
  303  over the tracks of another railroad company.—A railroad company
  304  operating a high-speed passenger rail system is solely
  305  responsible for all rail corridor improvements or upgrades
  306  relating to the system’s operation and safety. A local
  307  government or the state is not responsible for any costs
  308  associated with the construction and maintenance of the
  309  improvements necessary to operate a high-speed passenger rail
  310  system unless it expressly consents in writing.
  311         Section 12. Section 341.613, Florida Statutes, is created
  312  to read:
  313         341.613Enforcement actions.—In addition to any
  314  administrative action authorized by chapter 120 or by other law,
  315  the department may bring an action for the assessment and
  316  collection of civil penalties or an action for injunctive relief
  317  pursuant to 49 C.F.R. part 212, subpart B.
  318         Section 13. Section 341.614, Florida Statutes, is created
  319  to read:
  320         341.614Jurisdiction.—Jurisdiction to enforce this act
  321  shall be as provided by s. 316.640, and any penalty for
  322  violation of this act shall be imposed upon the railroad company
  323  that commits such violation.
  324         Section 14. This act shall take effect July 1, 2017.