Contact: Janie Sheng (202) 245-0221
01/15/1997 (Wednesday)
No. 97-02

FedRelay 1 (800) 877-8339


FOR RELEASE                                Contact: Dennis Watson
Wednesday, January 15, 1997                        (202) 927-5350
No. 97-2                                       TDD (202) 927-5721


The Surface Transportation Board (Board) today announced the implementation of a voluntary, experimental facsimile (fax) project to facilitate and expedite the service of decisions upon persons on service lists in proceedings before the Board.
The law requires that all parties in Board cases be served (provided) with Board decisions as soon as they are issued. The experimental project, Decision-Fax, would permit the Board to serve decisions of 10 or fewer pages by fax on those who choose to participate in the project. Instead of receiving a decision by mail, perhaps days after the date of service, those who choose to participate in the project would receive the faxed decision after close of business on the day of service.
The Decision-Fax project is intended to reduce the delay between the service and receipt of Board decisions, and to improve the efficiency of serving Board decisions. The
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Decision-Fax project is a first step in increasing the Board's use of technology to enhance its efficiency and improve its service to the public.
Under the project, three attempts will be made to serve the decision by fax to participants. If these attempts are unsuccessful, the Board will serve the decision by mail on the next business day after the date of service. Any decisions of more than 10 pages will continue to be served exclusively by mail. Persons currently receiving copies of Board decisions from its contractor, D.C. News, Inc., or in the Board news packages on the day of service, would continue to do so.
This project will become operational in approximately three weeks, and will continue for 180 days. A further news release will be issued announcing the actual implementation date of the project. If the project proves to be successful, the Board will take appropriate steps to formalize the process. The Board also may consider expanding the project to include the use of e-mail technology, and to add news releases to the material made available electronically.

To participate in Decision-Fax, parties must submit a written request, addressed to Secretary of the Board, Vernon A. Williams, on or before January 22, 1997. The written request must include the following applicable information: name; address; telephone number; fax number; e-mail and website addresses, if available; and contact person. Responses may be faxed to the Board at (202) 927-5984.

For questions or comments concerning the Board's
Decision-Fax project, please telephone Secretary Williams at
(202) 927-7428.