August 2022 NRC Bulletin

September 1, 2022

NRC Updates and Announcements

NRC 2023 Conference and NRC-REMSA Exhibition is Jan 4-7!

Mark your calendars for January 4-7, 2023 at the Boca Raton Resort & Spa for the 44th Annual NRC Conference and NRC-REMSA Exhibition. More information can be found by visiting our website, and below:

Registration: Register for the 2023 NRC Conference by clicking here .

Take advantage of your member discount. NRC members receive a significant registration rate discount. Were you an NRC member in previous years and are unsure of your current status, or are you currently not a member? Then please visit for more information. If you have any questions about registration or your membership status please contact Mike McGonagle at or call 202-975-0365.

A registration fee table and schedule is below: 

Exhibit Hall: Exhibit space for the 2023 NRC-REMSA Exhibition is on sale now! Click the below links for more details:

For questions regarding the NRC-REMSA Exhibition and reserving your booth, please contact Heidi Baker at (202) 844-6126 or by email at

An exhibit booth fee table is below:

Golf Tournament: The NRC 2023 Golf Tournament will be held Friday, January 6th and located on two courses: the Boca Raton Resort Golf Club located at 501 E Camino Real, Boca Raton, FL 33432 and the award-winning Deer Creek Golf Club located at 2801 DC Country Club Boulevard, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442 (roughly an 18-20 minute drive from the Boca Raton Resort Golf Club.) Due to the historic size of the NRC Golf Tournament and course size constraints, NRC staff secured two memorable and challenging courses for attendees to experience. To register for the 2023 NRC Golf Tournament, please click here. You must be registered for the conference to participate in this event. 

Everglades Tour: Concurrent with the NRC Golf Tournament, an Everglades Tour will be available for those who do not want to golf on Friday, January 6th. Pick-up and drop-off for the event will be at the Boca Raton Resort 501 E Camino Real, Boca Raton, FL 33432. To register for the 2023 NRC Everglades tour, please click here. You must be registered for the conference to participate in this event. 

Questions? Please contact or visit

Policy on Entertainment - The NRC Board of Directors has adopted a Policy on Entertainment to provide all NRC Conference and NRC-REMSA Exhibition ("Conference") attendees an equal opportunity to participate in the entertainment of our railroad, transit, commuter, passenger and other customers, speakers, and guests.

The Policy applies to events in connection with the Conference. During this timeframe, private hospitality events on or off the Conference premises are not permitted and no organized private entertainment is permitted while conference proceedings or events are occurring. Attendees are encouraged to participate in the common hospitality events and may not organize events that compete with the conference program.

All Attendees are expected to comply with this Policy. By registering for the Conference, you are certifying that all representatives and associates who are attending the Conference on behalf of your organization have been notified of this Policy and will observe and abide by it.

Scam Alert -We ask conference attendees to be vigilant of scams, including any solicitations via email that offer hotel deals or registration lists on behalf of the NRC. These groups are not affiliated with the NRC. Please check the NRC website or email NRC staff directly for the most up-to-date conference information.

NRC Members: The NRC 2022 Awards are Now Open!

The NRC would like to introduce the Innovation in Technology Award. This new award will honor and recognize innovation and unique technologies, or technological services, created or implemented by an NRC member company. Eligible technologies or related services include grade crossings, RWP, contractor safety, freight rail, industrial track, rail transit, commuter rail, intercity passenger rail, rail on port facilities and rail on military facilities. To view the Innovation in Technology Award application please click here

The NRC’s Technology Committee, chaired by Allen Branham, president of B4 Solutions, LLC., developed the award to highlight ways our members are using technology to enhance safety and operations in our industry. The Committee’s formation and work is in response to requests by railway engineering leaders for technology solutions that will help generate returns on investment and bottom-line savings as well as enhance safety.


The NRC Railroad Construction Project of the Year Awards recognize exemplary NRC member projects in two categories, the Large Project Category (projects with budgets over $10 million) and the Small Project Category (projects with budgets of $10 million or less). All types of rail construction projects are eligible for the awards and the purpose is to honor innovation, expertise, and quality project management. To view the NRC Rail Construction Project of the Year Award please click here.

The NRC Field Employee of the Year Award recognizes a field employee employed by a contractor member companies who exhibits exemplary performance during the year. The purpose of this award is to recognize and honor the rail contracting employee who has demonstrated the most dedication and excellence in his/her field. To view the NRC Field Employee of the Year Award please click here.

The NRC also encourages members to nominate individuals to the NRC Hall of Fame. The purpose of the NRC Hall of Fame is to recognize and honor those individuals who have made significant contributions to the NRC and the rail construction and maintenance industry. The criteria to be nominated is an individual must be a current or former employee or owner of an NRC member company is eligible for induction to the Hall of Fame. Members will be inducted according to the decision of the NRC Hall of Fame Induction Committee. To view the NRC Hall of Fame application please click here. 

Questions? Please contact 

All winners will be recognized at the NRC 2023 Conference in Boca Raton, Florida. 


NRC 2022 Education Grant: Deadline Extended to After Labor Day!

The NRC is now accepting applications for its Education Grant Program. Originally scheduled to have a deadline in late Spring, and in order to give each University the chance to apply given the large workload at the end of the spring semester, the deadline is now Friday, September 9

The Program awards an education grant to a college, university or technical school within the United States with a railway construction, railway engineering or construction management program. This year the NRC will award one $15,000 grant to the top applicant. Applications will be judged by the NRC Education Committee. NRC Education grant funds are intended for targeted student educational and research purposes. Learn more about the program and download the application here.

The deadline for receiving completed applications is Friday, September 9. Applicants will be informed of their application status shortly after Labor Day. Grant application materials can be emailed to, sent via Adobe PDF, Dropbox or similar program.

NRC Members: The NRC 2022 Scholarships deadline is September 15!


The NRC 2022 Scholarship Program is currently accepting applications and wants your child or grandchild to apply. The NRC offers tuition assistance to children or grandchildren of NRC member company employees. The deadline to submit your application is COB September 15, 2022.


This year, three total scholarships will be awarded as follows: the first place applicant will receive $12,000, the second place applicant will receive $6,000, and the third place applicant will receive $3,000. Scholarship funds, awarded annually, will be sent directly to the student at the beginning of the next term of study. Students must be in attendance for a full year following receipt of the award.


Please click here to view the 2022 NRC Scholarship Application.


In order to apply, an applicant must meet the following criteria:

  1. be a daughter, son, granddaughter or grandson of a current employee of an NRC member company. Not a member? Click here to join today.
  2. be enrolled at the time of application as a full-time college student at an accredited two-year college offering an Associate's degree or an accredited four-year college or university, or if the student is a recent high school graduate enrolling at one of the aforementioned institutions.


Please compile your completed application with all required materials in to one PDF and send directly by email to with "2022 NRC Scholarship Application" in the subject line. The deadline for receiving completed applications is COB September 15. Applicants will be informed of their application status in early December. Grant application materials can be emailed to, sent via Adobe PDF, Dropbox or similar program. If you have any questions, please reach out to NRC staff by email at or phone at 202-975-0365. 

Holland L.P. Hosts U.S. Sen. Duckworth Staff Member on Manufacturing Facility Tour

On August 18, NRC member compan Holland, L.P. hosted Peter Danos, Suburban Outreach and Grants Coordinator for U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) for a tour of its University Park, IL facility which manufactures a variety of significant railroad track components for the railway industry. 

Holland, L.P. representatives – Jordan Wolf, President, Russell Gehl, EVP Business Development, and Rob Rosencrans, General Manager, Rail Services-North America – led and participated in an employee meeting with Danos and a tour through the manufacturing facility. “It was terrific hosting Peter at our facility today and getting the chance to hear what the Senator and her staff are hearing on Capitol Hill. The decisions that come from Capitol Hill have the chance to impact Holland both positively and negatively, so getting to hear from our Senator’s staff on issues that matter to our industry was a great experience” said Wolf.

Danos and those participating on the tour talked about the products and services Holland provides and touched on the economic benefit they provide Illinois, as well as the over 36 different countries they have provided services in across the globe. “It’s wonderful to be here today touring the Holland facility and learning about what they do to support Illinois and the industry…I’m very much looking forward to sharing what I’ve learned today with the Senator” said Danos. 

The NRC is dedicated to serving the needs of NRC Members and the railroad contractor and supplier community. That includes making sure that our members have their voices heard on Capitol Hill. Members of Congress frequently mention in-person site visits as one of the most effective ways to convey the importance of the industry. If you would like to talk with NRC staff about organizing an event with your company or our grassroots program further, please email

Renew Your NRC Membership or Join Today!

It's time to renew your company's NRC 2022 membership. NRC staff has emailed your organization's primary contact for with all corresponding information for your organization's renewal. If your organization was a member in 2021, and you would like to renew or have any questions about renewing or joining in please contact NRC staff at

Not an NRC member and want to access to this and many other membership benefitsJoin as an NRC member today!. If you have any questions about joining the NRC, or your organization's current membership status, please simply reply to this email.

Railroads, three unions reach tentative labor agreements

On August 29, the National Carriers' Conference Committee announced that three major rail unions had tentatively agreed with Class I freight railroads on terms to resolve the ongoing labor dispute. The three unions - The Transportation Communications Union, International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers and the Brotherhood of Railway Carmen. Together the three unions represent more than 15,000 rail employees. Nine other unions have yet to reach an agreement with the railroads. Under the Railway Labor Act, the railroads and the unions remain in a 30-day “cooling-off” period. Voluntary settlements with all unions would avert any potential disruptions to rail service after the cooling-off period ends Sept. 16. The dozen unions represent a combined 115,000 rail works in the United States. 

The tentative pacts include a 24% wage increase during the five-year period from 2020 through 2024 — with a 14.1% wage increase effective immediately — and five annual $1,000 lump-sum payments. A portion of the wage increases and lump-sum payments are retroactive and will be paid out promptly upon ratification of the agreements by the unions’ membership. This represents the largest general wage increase ever achieved through national freight bargaining, according to the unions.

Biden-Harris Administration Announce $1.4 Billion Available in CRISI Grant Awards Funding

On September 1, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) issued a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) announcing the availability of over $1.4 billion in Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvement (CRISI) Grant funding.

The CRISI Program, which is administered by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), advances projects that modernize America’s freight and passenger rail infrastructure, allowing people and goods to move more safely and efficiently and helping make goods more affordable for American families. “Projects funded by these CRISI grants will generate economic opportunities and improve the travel experience in communities across America, whether urban or rural, large or small,” said FRA Administrator Amit Bose.

The NOFO is published in the Federal Register here. Applications for funding are due 90 days after this date. FRA will support applicants with web-based training and technical assistance. More information about the CRISI Program can be found on FRA’s website here.

Biden-Harris Administration Announce $2.2 Billion in RAISE Grant Awards Funding

On August 11, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg announced that the Biden-Harris Administration has awarded more than $2.2 billion from the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program to help urban and rural communities move forward on projects that modernize roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports, and intermodal transportation and make our transportation systems safer, more accessible, more affordable, and more sustainable. 

Projects were evaluated on several criteria, including safety, environmental sustainability, quality of life, economic competitiveness and opportunity, partnership and collaboration, innovation, state of good repair, and mobility and community connectivity. Within these areas, the Department considered how projects will improve accessibility for all travelers, bolster supply chain efficiency, and support racial equity and economic growth, especially in historically disadvantaged communities and areas of persistent poverty. 

“We are proud to support so many outstanding infrastructure projects in communities large and small, modernizing America’s transportation systems to make them safer, more affordable, more accessible, and more sustainable,” said Secretary Buttigieg. To view a full list of award recipients please click here.

Industry News and Updates

BNSF’s John Cech named 2022 Engineer of the Year by Railway Track & Structures

John Cech, vice president, Engineering at BNSF, is the recipient of the 2022 Engineer of the Year Award from Railway Track & Structures Media. The award was presented at the opening session of the AREMA 2022 annual conference and expo, held in Denver, Colorado. Cech said he was very proud of receiving the award, pointing out this is really an award for his engineering team at BNSF. “We could not have accomplished the many tough projects we’ve done over the years without the excellent engineering team we have at BNSF. This award belongs to them as much as it does to me.”

Ridership on Amtrak's Virginia routes reaches all-time high

On August 31, the Virginia Passenger Rail Authority (VPRA) and Amtrak announced that ridership on state-supported trains reached 110,256 passengers in July, a 28.9% increase from June's level and a 19.8% increase compared with pre-pandemic ridership in July 2019. "These numbers make it very clear: Virginians want more passenger rail to be a part of their transportation network," said VPRA Executive Director D.J. Stadtler. "With the launch of two new roundtrips and the resumption of another, we know that rail works for the Commonwealth and look forward to further expanding service throughout the state." Virginia launched state-supported passenger-rail service in 2009 with one roundtrip between Washington, D.C., and Lynchburg. Since that time, the state’s service has grown to include stops at 17 stations along four corridors.

UP Conductor killed after train hits derailment device

According to reports, On August 29, work that had been done on railroad track earlier in the day may have led to a derailment that killed a Union Pacific conductor. The accident happened in the Riverside area of the Lower Valley in El Paso, Texas. Two train cars left the track and damaged a gas meter, leading to the evacuation of nearby residents. “We continue to work with local and federal authorities on the investigation and are not releasing the employee’s name at this time,” Union Pacific said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the employee’s family and coworkers.”

Amtrak, CSX, NS ask STB to extend mediation period in Gulf Coast case

On August 24, Amtrak, CSX, Norfolk Southern Railway, the Alabama State Port Authority and its Terminal Railway Alabama State Docks jointly asked the Surface Transportation Board (STB) to extend the mediation period for the parties to settle a dispute over proposed Amtrak service along the gulf coast. On June 10, the STB issued a decision resolving a number of issues between the parties and ordered a mediation period set to end today. However, the railroads and port authority want a 30-day extension to continue mediation talks, beginning August 26. Under the board’s rules, the initial mediation period may be extended for additional periods of time not to exceed 30 days per period.

The NRC is a trade association representing businesses from across the nation in the rail construction and maintenance field. NRC members range in size from small family businesses to the largest companies in the industry. NRC members perform work for transit, commuter, intercity passenger, industrial, and freight rail customers, with services including track construction and maintenance, grade crossings, signal and communications installation, bridge construction and repair, rail yard work, and many more. The NRC strives to put an emphasis on rail safety and quality while proudly serving the rail industry