Canadian National has completed the merger of the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway Company (EJ&E) into its Wisconsin Central Ltd. (WC) subsidiary, effective Jan. 1, 2013.
The merger of the two rail affiliates that connect in the Chicago, Ill., area will simplify CN’s corporate structure and operations in the United States.
Jim Vena, CN senior vice-president, Southern Region, said, “CN expects the merger will lead to operational efficiencies and service improvements. These merged railroads will continue all the existing operations of WC and EJ&E in the Chicago Terminal with a unified workforce, which will permit better management of crew staffing and more efficient and reliable rail service to customers throughout the region.”
The merger was authorized through a notice of exemption for transactions within a corporate family filed with the U.S. Surface Transportation Board (STB) on May 23, 2012, that became effective on June 22, 2012. Voluntary implementing agreements with the unions representing the various crafts were reached, allowing the company to complete the merger.
The merger will not affect or alter the STB’s continuing oversight and reserved jurisdiction over CN’s 2009 acquisition of the EJ&E, the mitigation conditions imposed by the STB or the Voluntary Mitigation Agreements reached by CN and numerous communities along the EJ&E arc.
CN has also reached a tentative agreement with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers System Council 11 to renew the labor contract for approximately 700 CN signals and communications employees in Canada.
Details of the agreement, negotiated prior to the expiry of the current contract on Dec. 31, 2012, are being withheld pending ratification by the union’s membership. CN expects to hear the results of the union’s ratification vote before the end of January 2013.