In September 2018, Martin Marietta Materials (MMM) announced that their facility had been sold to Rock & Rail, which is a Class III railroad that is wholly owned by MMM. Rock & Rail asserts that as a railroad, they are not bound by any local land use or zoning codes, and that they are exempt from essentially all local regulations. Instead, they claim that they are controlled by the Surface Transportation Board, a Federal entity that replaced the Interstate Commerce Commission.
Rock & Rail Press Release (9-25-2018)
MMM also filed a complaint against the plaintiffs, seeking to prevent them from proceeding with their appeal to the Colorado Court of Appeals.
Rock & Rail Complaint Against Plaintiffs (9-26-2018)
Plaintiffs’ Answer and Counterclaim (10-18-2018)
Meanwhile, Congressman Ken Buck sent a letter to the Surface Transportation Board indicating that federal preemption was intended to apply to a railroad that builds a facility, not a materials company that buys a shuttered federally-regulated railroad to avoid local jurisdiction.
Letter from Ken Buck to STB (10-11-18)
Read more in the Greeley Tribune:
The case is going to trial at 9 AM on May 11-14, 2020:
Federal District Court
Alfred Arraj US Courthouse
901 19th Street
Denver, CO 80294