Association of Transportation Law Professionals — September/October 2010 — Owen Eagan of Saint Consulting on when to use, and not over-use, preemption under the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act. Railroads are interstate by nature — if local interests were allowed to have their way with them, a decision in one jurisdiction would have profound effects far beyond the confines of that jurisdiction. For that reason, Congress made sure local zoning laws and regulations generally cannot get in the way of most types of railroad development projects. Although this tool exists, it should only be used as a last resort. Denying the public a role in the decision- making process can have many adverse consequences. It can result in costly litigation, delay a project for years, and negatively affect the brand reputations of the companies involved.