Commentary

RailPAC’s Dyson writes Amtrak IG re Deely letter

28 February, 2008

Mr. Fred Weiderhold, Jr
Inspector General
NATIONAL RAILROAD PASSENGER CORPORATION
P.O. Box 76654
Washington, DC 20013 6654

Via FAX to 215 XXX-XXXX

CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN RAILPAC AND AMTRAK RE-COAST STARLIGHT SUSPENSION – CLAIM THAT LETTER FROM J. DEELY IS FAKE – REQUEST FOR INVESTIGATION

Dear Mr. Weiderhold:

Our organization, Rail Passenger Association of California (RailPAC) is a non-profit advocacy group staffed entirely by volunteers. We have recently been in correspondence with Amtrak President Mr. Kummant over the suspension of “Coast Starlight” service. Here’s a chronology of events to the best of my knowledge. Please note that RailPAC has a P.O.Box in Sacramento, I am domiciled in Burbank, and so letters to me may be delayed depending on when one of our members can pick them up and forward them to me.

1/22/08: I faxed my first letter to Mr. Kummant urging reinstatement of the Coast Starlight with a bus bridge.

1/24/08: A letter was sent to me from Amtrak’s Oakland office over the signature of J. Deely expressing why Amtrak had suspended the service. The letter included attachments which are reprints of internal e-mail documents including my letter to Mr. Kummant.

1/28/08 A letter was sent from Washington signed by Alex Kummant explaining the Coast Starlight decision.

2/11/08:I wrote a second letter to Mr. Kummant objecting to the Amtrak decision, and also referencing Mr. Deely’s letter.

2/15/08:A reply was sent from Mr. Kummant. 2/15/08:Correspondence was posted on RailPAC website for our members and supporters.

2/20/08 An e-mail was sent from Mr. William Herrmann, Deputy General Counsel, alleging that the Deely letter was a fake and requesting us, under threat of legal action, to remove it from our web site. The letter was so removed immediately.

We at RailPAC feel that we have been the victim of a fraud. Based on the representations of Amtrak’s Mr. Herrmann the fraud was perpetrated by a person or persons unknown. The letter we received over Mr. Deely’s signature is on Amtrak stationary with the correct Oakland address. It was written so quickly after my first letter was sent to Mr. Kummant and before I published the contents and before it was posted on our website that it must have come from inside Amtrak. No one has denied that the attached e-mails are genuine. By being forced to withdraw this letter and publish a retraction we have had our credibility questioned.

Mr. Weiderhold, in the interest of preventing a recurrence of this most regrettable incident I request that you carry out a full investigation to discover beyond doubt whether the “Deely” letter is indeed a fake, and if not, then who is responsible for sending it and the accompanying Amtrak e-mails. If you need any more information or assistance with this enquiry, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours faithfully,
/s/
Paul J. Dyson
President
Rail Passenger Association of California

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