Two things you should be doing today to advance the 45G credit.
Recruit House and Senate Co-sponsors
2.  Collect (or require contractors to collect) before-and-after photos of track work 

1. Short Line Railroad Rehabilitation and Investment Act of 2011 - Action needed to get Congressional support.

The House version of the Section 45G short line railroad tax credit extension has been introduced as H.R. 721 by Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR). The Senate version of this bill is S. 672 by Sen. Rockefeller (D-WV) and Sen. Crapo (R-ID).

American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association Members need to reach out to their Members of Congress and secure their :co-sponsorship" of this important legislation. For information on who your Representatives and Senators are, contact When a Member of Congress decides to co-sponsor H.R. 721 or S. 672, LET US KNOW. 

Originally enacted in 2004, Section 45G creates a strong incentive for short line railroads to invest private sector dollars on freight railroad track rehabilitation and improvements.  The credit is capped based on a mileage formula and is currently scheduled to expire at the end of the current 2011 tax year.

Section 45G creates an incentive for short line railroads to invest in track rehabilitation by providing a tax credit of 50 cents for every dollar a class II or class III railroad spends on track improvements. The credit is capped based on a mileage formula. H.R. 721 and S. 672 propose the following:

  • Extend 45G - Section 45G will expire on December 31, 2011.  This bill proposes extending the provision through 2017 to provide important long-term planning certainty necessary to maximize private-sector transportation infrastructure investment.
  • Allow eligibility for new short line railroads created after January 1, 2005 and before January 1, 2011 - Congress should allow 45G credits to be earned from investments made to track purchased by or built by short line railroads after January 1, 2005.  Congress originally created a cutoff date of January 1, 2005 to avoid the creation of an incentive for large railroads to increase line sales.  Since 2004, new short line railroads have been created, and several short lines have constructed new track to provide freight rail service to new rail customers.  Expenses to maintain these lines should qualify for 45G.  A new cutoff date of January 1, 2011 is imposed to prevent the distortion of the economics of future line sales and to cap the score of 45G at a known number.

For the complete text of the bill, additional information, and handouts for your Members of Congress, click here.

If your Representatives want to co-sponsor H.R. 721, they should contact:

If your Senators want to co-sponsor S. 672, they should contact:

2. Collect (or require contractors to collect) before-and-after photos of track work

Rep. Lynn Jenkins, CPA (R-KS) believes that the best way to prove the effectiveness of Section 45G is to document short line track work in photos.  Photos of all track work are encouraged.  If you claimed or assigned 45G credits and made track improvements, we want pictures that demonstrate the work even if only a part of the upgrade was supported by 45G.  If your railroad benefited from 45G, so did your track condition, so photograph it and share the photos with us!

Better yet, make your contractors take the photos.  ASLRRA has prepared boilerplate language and instructions which can be included in your purchase orders and track work contracts!  Include this language and have your contractors do the work for you while supporting the 721 effort at the same time!

Before & After

Track work photos will be compiled into our 45G Success Story Book and used to promote 45G on Capitol Hill.  Contractors that provide photos can also have their logo and contact information included in the project work summary!  Photographs should be high-resolution, print-quality digital images.  Photographs from most popular digital cameras will suffice.

Before & After

Photos may be taken by any employee of the contractor on regular digital camera equipment - no professional or third-party photographers are required.  Photos are best when taken before and after the work from the same or similar location.  If you miss the "before" part, "during" photos can suffice.  For examples, review the 45G Success Story Book. 

E-mail your photos with identifying information