Following the approval by the Administrative Board of integrated public transport association Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Ruhr (VRR) and the competent bodies of DB, the negotiated contract on the out-of-court settlement between VRR and DB Regio NRW (DB) has now been signed. All significant points of the key points agreed in June 2009 were transferred into this contract and legal questions were resolved. A similar decision is expected from the responsible bodies at DB in the next few days.
The new agreements will result in clear improvements in the quality of rail transportation for customers in many areas. In particular the implementation of the regional and suburban train concept, which has been worked out jointly and includes many operational and route optimizations, as well as new and modernized vehicles, is a positive development for passengers.
Since the adoption of the key point paper in June 2009, the association agreed on the contract content in numerous detailed meetings with DB Regio NRW. The Administrative Board has now requested the VRR Executive Board to approve the arrangements made and to sign the agreement for the out-of-court settlement of the pending legal disputes and for the improvement of regional rail transport in VRR's area of responsibility.
"Following two years of tough negotiations, now the way is finally free for passengers and municipalities to be able to rely on sustainable local transportation in the VRR region," VRR Executive Board Member Martin Husmann is pleased with the Administrative Board's resolution.
"The result is also positive for the municipalities because there will be no additional burdens on the budgets for the 2008 – 2010 years", Frank Heidenreich, Chairman of the CDU fraction at VRR, was pleased to remark.
"We are adopting the right course to achieve better performance in local railway transportation in the association area," Ernst Prüsse, Chairman of the SPD fraction at VRR, explained. "Now the state government needs to put its promises into practice and ensure sustainable financing," said Prüsse in conclusion.
"The conclusion of the agreement contract is a good result for VRR," Dr. Ute Jasper, attorney and Partner at Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek was pleased to note. "This agreement puts an end to the legal disputes that are pending between DB and VRR. In addition, the compromise will improve the quality of regional rail transport in the VRR’s association area and its financing is put on a sound footing."
Dr. Ute Jasper and her team provided legal counsel to VRR both during the legal dispute with DB in court and in the subsequent settlement agreement negotiations.