Money in state plan for shipping center will help Malheur County agriculture

By Pat Caldwell

The Enterprise

ONTARIO — Malheur County would get a major new rail facility to ship local products under a transportation package under debate at the Oregon Legislature.

The legislation includes $26 million for what is often referred to as a trans load railway facility, seen as critical to keeping agricultural producers competitive.

At such a depot, farm products are trucked in and then loaded onto special trains that can make a run to the east coast in a matter of days. Each train holds several hundred truckloads of goods, lowering freight costs and allowing faster delivery.

Local and state officials have been working hard to locate such a depot in Malheur County. No site has been selected, but Nyssa has been considered as one possible host.

But the money is far from a certainty. The state Department of Transportation listed the project as one that would . . .