3:45 PM EDT, September 29, 2011
Keolis can bid for the contract to run the Camden and Brunswick MARC commuter rail lines ("Holocaust rail fight moves to Congress," Sept. 25). The survivors and descendants of those herded into cattle cars destined for Nazi concentration camps by the French national railroad, the majority shareholder in Keolis, will gain access to the records of their fateful journeys.
That's what the General Assembly accomplished with the passage of legislation we introduced this past session.
Keolis and its parent company opposed the original legislation. However, the final bill was the product of extensive negotiations, in which Keolis' lobbyist, Bill Pitcher, was a full participant, along with House Health and Government Operations Committee Chairman Peter A. Hammen, Maryland State Archivist Edward C. Papenfuse, and representatives of the survivors and descendants. The amended bill "will allow [Keolis] to rebid on the MARC contract," stated Mr. Pitcher.
Several rail companies, including Keolis, have expressed interest in that contract — so much so that the deadline for submitting bids has been extended by three weeks to Oct. 31. The survivors, as well as commuter rail passengers, will benefit if Keolis bids on this contract and makes available the information in its records.
Sen. Joan Carter Conway and Del. Samuel I. "Sandy" Rosenberg,Annapolis
The writers, both Democrats, represent Baltimore's 43rd and 41st legislative districts, respectively.
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