May 17, 2023 12:10 PM
LUNCH:Brian Searles, VTRANS Negotiator-Montrealer
Update from VTRANS Consultant on Return of the Montrealer

Brian Searles is working for VTRANS and the Scott Administration to negotiate the transition of the Amtrak Vermonter back to the Montrealer - where the daily train service from Washington DC and New York City to St. Albans, Vermont returns to its former route that ends in Montreal.  

The situation is complicated, involving alterations to the in Montreal to allow for customs "pre-clearance," which means passengers heading south to the United States will pass though customs in Montreal before boarding the train.  Other issues involve securing daily access to very busy tracks for Amtrak leading into and out of Montreal and labor issues.  This complex conversation has been going on for years, led by Senator Leahy and his staff. 

Brian is a perfect person to represent Vermont.  First he grew up in Essex Junction, a community with deep train roots.  Moreover, he served as Secretary of Transportation.  Both elements of his background make him the right person for the job!!