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Nevada State AFL-CIO, SMART Nevada Condemn Governor Lombardo’s Veto of AB456

Stephanie Justice
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CARSON CITY —  Today, the Nevada State AFL-CIO and SMART Nevada condemned Governor Lombardo’s veto of Assembly Bill 456, which would have increased protections for rail workers and regulated the length of freight trains that are run on Nevada’s railroads:

“We are extremely disappointed by Governor Lombardo’s decision to veto Assembly Bill 456, and we would have expected better from him as someone who has vowed to keep Nevada’s communities safe. The longer we go without reforming our state’s railroad regulations, the closer we get to experiencing a tragedy like the derailment in East Palestine, Ohio. With this legislation, Nevada could have been a leader in railroad safety; now, we run the risk of becoming a national headline in the future," said Executive Secretary-Treasurer Susie Martinez. "Our rail workers deserve better. Our communities deserve better. I can only hope that one day, we don’t have to experience devastation due to our leaders’ carelessness. The Nevada State AFL-CIO will continue to be a primary advocate for the safety of our workers and our state as a whole.”

“Governor Lombardo's veto of AB456, a critical rail safety bill for Nevada, is deeply troubling. This legislation would have given train crews access to wayside detectors - proactive tools for identifying rail issues before they become full-blown accidents. It also aimed to tackle the ongoing risks posed by dangerously long trains and consistently blocked crossings. However, witnessing our leaders prioritize political interests and industry influence over the safety of Nevadans is truly disappointing,” said Jason Doering, Chair and Director of SMART Nevada. “The unanimous opposition from Nevada’s Republicans across not just this legislative session, but past ones as well, against vital rail safety improvements, seriously questions their commitment to the well-being of our communities. With railroads failing to provide substantive counterarguments or plausible alternatives, and given the considerable evidence underlining the dangers of long trains, it is clear that measures such as those proposed in AB456 are desperately needed. Despite this setback, we won't be deterred. Our commitment to rail safety remains steadfast. We will continue to fight for the necessary safety reforms, holding on to the hope that it won't take a major rail accident in Nevada to underscore their importance. Nevadans deserve leaders who prioritize their safety over politics and industry pressures - something that, sadly, seems beyond the grasp of Nevada’s Republicans.”