The Surface Transportation Board is an independent federal agency that is charged with the economic regulation of various modes of surface transportation, primarily freight rail.
The agency has jurisdiction over railroad rate, practice, and service issues and rail restructuring transactions, including mergers, line sales, line construction, and line abandonments. The STB also has jurisdiction over certain passenger rail matters, the intercity bus industry, non-energy pipelines, household goods carriers’ tariffs, and rate regulation of non-contiguous domestic water transportation (marine freight shipping involving the mainland United States, Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico, and other U.S. territories and possessions).
Created on January 1, 1996 by the ICC Termination Act of 1995, the Board is the successor to the former Interstate Commerce Commission (1887-1995) and was administratively aligned with the U.S. Department of Transportation from 1996 to mid-December 2015. The STB Reauthorization Act of 2015 established the STB as a wholly independent federal agency on December 18, 2015.
The STB consists of five Board Members, one of which serves as the Chairman. The STB staff is divided into six offices, in addition to an Equal Employment Opportunity office.