Railroad CEO expects economic upturn

Posted: Sunday, January 30, 2011

ANCHORAGE — Alaska Railroad Corp. CEO Christopher Aadnesen says he’s expecting the railroad’s economic recovery that began during fiscal 2009 to continue through the current fiscal year.

According to its fiscal year 2009 annual report, the railroad netted about $14 million in profits. That was an increase from the prior fiscal year when the railroad netted $12.5 million.

The railroad laid off 127 employees in 2009, but Aadnesen told the Alaska Journal of Commerce he doesn’t think further cost-cutting will be needed.

“Most of the scaling back in this company has already been done,” he said. “We’re looking at productivity items. And productivity items allow better use of employees within the labor agreement.”

Aadnesen said he is hoping to craft new labor agreements that will result in both higher productivity and higher wages for workers.

“We’ve had some good success with that, and we have no reason to believe that won’t go on in the future,” he said.

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