The Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) joined more than 200 members of the Agricultural Transportation Working Group urging Congress to pass legislation to avoid a national rail strike.
On Nov. 28, 2022, President Joe Biden issued a statement calling on Congress to pass legislation immediately to adopt the tentative agreement reached between railroad unions and management in September. ARA thanks the U.S. House of Representatives for passing legislation today, and urges the Senate to do the same.
In a letter sent to congressional leaders on Nov. 30, the agricultural groups noted that a rail strike or lockout combined with existing challenges in the U.S. transportation system would have harmful consequences for the agricultural and broader U.S. economies.
“We urge Congress to deliver a bipartisan bill to the president’s desk well in advance of Dec. 9 at 12:01 a.m. when a strike or lockout could occur,” the agricultural groups noted. “As experienced in September, rail services are anticipated to begin winding down approximately one week in advance of Dec. 9. We thank you for your responsiveness to this imminent supply chain issue.”
ARA shared a grassroots alert with its membership to encourage them to send a message to their elected officials in Congress about avoiding a rail strike.
A tentative agreement was reached in time to avert a rail strike or lockout in September, but some of the railroad unions voted against ratification. ARA along with the National Grain & Feed Association (NGFA) and other stakeholders are urging Congress to intervene before the “cooling-off” period ends on Dec. 9.