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County considers abandoning railroad project

A request for proposals seeking to replace UHRR as the operator is ready to be released as of June 12. But supervisors voted to delay the release as the county negotiates with the state to get out of the project altogether.

County officials have assumed that if Warren County abandons the project it would be obligated to return over $2 million in state and federal grants.

But Dusek said that there is a potential to abandon the project without owing the money if the rail lines were used for another activity, like a bike path or snowmobiling trails.

But not all supervisors are ready to rip up the rails.

"It seems to me that all of this talk of the railroad's demise is a bit premature," Stony Creek Supervisor Frank Thomas said. "We have only tried one operator and maybe another one would be more successful."

But the minds of the growing list of anti-railroad supervisors may be already made.

"People would like to find a way to back out of this," Stec said. "We just have to do it right in a responsible way."

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