Firm Overview

Firm Overview

In the 1970s, Mr. Howard represented the Trustees of Penn Central Transportation Company during the bankruptcy and reorganization of Penn Central, which became the principal component of Conrail.  In the 1980s, he represented Guilford Transportation Industries in connection with its acquisition of three railroads--Boston and Maine, Maine Central and Delaware and Hudson--and other rail related matters.  He served as the Chapter 11 trustee of Bangor & Aroostook Railroad and several of its affiliates.  The rail service provided by the BAR system was successfully preserved by means of a sale to Montréal, Maine & Atlantic Railway.  Mr. Howard regularly represents short line carriers in a variety of matters relating to rail transportation.

Regulatory.   Mr. Howard has experience in a wide variety of rail transportation regulatory issues.  He represents clients before the Surface Transportation Board, the regulatory body for freight rail transportation, on matters such as Federal preemption, licensing and abandonments.  He recently represented Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway in connection with the abandonment of 233 miles of rail lines in Maine.

Transactions.  He also handles transactions involving rail carriers, including mergers and acquisitions, purchases and sales of assets and stock, operating agreements, trackage rights agreements, rail transportation contracts and other rail related transactions. In a recent transaction, Mr. Howard represented the owners of Marquette Rail in the sale of the company to RailAmerica.

Litigation.  Mr. Howard regularly engages in representation of clients in litigation matters relating to rail transportation, including actions before the Surface Transportation Board and collaborates with other law firms in litigation in state and federal courts.  He is experienced in the resolution of rail disputes by means of arbitration and mediation, and he represents clients before the Railroad Retirement Board on a variety of matters relating to the scope of coverage of the Railroad Retirement Act.

Passenger Service.  In addition to the activities outlined above, which relate primarily to freight railroads, he represents clients in matters relating to rail passenger service, Amtrak and intercity rail passenger service and commuter rail service.  For example, Mr. Howard has represented the Coalition of Northeastern Governors, providing advice relating to Amtrak and passenger service in the Northeast generally, and he has represented Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad, the entity that formerly provided commuter rail service for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in the Boston area.  He also represents commuter rail operators in connection with the submission of proposals and coverage questions under the Railroad Retirement Act.

Disposition of Excess Real Estate.  In conjunction with several real estate experts, Mr. Howard also provides advice in connection  the sale of excess railroad real property and the use and development of railroad rights-of-way for non-rail purposes, such as utility easement corridors.

Alternative Dispute Resolution.  Mr. Howard has served as an arbitrator in both rail and non-rail commercial matters.  He is a transportation member of the commercial panel of the American Arbitration Association and on the roster of arbitrators maintained by the Surface Transportation Board.















with the sale of excess railroad real property and the use and development of railroad rights-of-way for non-rail purposes, such as utility easement corridors .

Call or Email Jim

Office Tel: 831-659-4112
Cell: 617-905-6083