2020 Georgia Code
Title 46 - Public Utilities and Public Transportation
Chapter 8 - Railroad Companies
Article 2 - Powers and Duties of Commission as to Railroad Companies Generally
§ 46-8-21. Powers of Commission Regarding Railroads Generally

Universal Citation: GA Code § 46-8-21 (2020)

The commission shall have power and authority:

  1. To ascertain the cost of construction and the present value of properties in Georgia owned by railroad companies; and to that end, the commission may employ necessary experts;
  2. To prescribe rules with reference to the use, construction, removal, or change of spurtracks and sidetracks, with full power to compel service to be furnished to manufacturing plants, warehouses, and similar places of business along the line of railroads where practicable and where in the judgment of the commission the business is sufficient to justify the same and on such terms and conditions as the commission may prescribe;
  3. To order and compel the operation of sufficient and proper passenger service when in its judgment inefficient or insufficient service is being rendered to the public or any community;
  4. To order and compel the making and operating of physical connections between lines of railroads crossing or intersecting each other or entering the same incorporated city, when in its judgment such connections are practicable and in the public interest;
  5. To fix penalties for neglect on the part of railroad companies to adjust overcharges and losses, or failure to decline to do so, if deemed unjust, in a reasonable time;
  6. To prescribe rules requiring the prompt receipt, carriage, and delivery of freight and the prompt furnishing of cars to shippers desiring to ship freight, and to prescribe penalties for failure to observe such rules, and to prescribe rules and penalties regarding the transfer of cars through yards of connecting roads;
  7. To order the erection of depots and stations where it deems the same necessary and to order the appointment and service of depot or station agents; and
  8. To regulate schedules and compel connections at junction points of competing lines.

(Ga. L. 1907, p. 72, § 7; Civil Code 1910, § 2664; Code 1933, § 93-308.)


Railroad yard constructional details not within commission's authority.

- Public Service Commission is without authority to regulate constructional details as to spacing of railroad tracks within railroad yards. 1952-53 Op. Att'y Gen. p. 496.

Requiring railroad to begin or maintain passenger service.

- Commission does not have authority to require railroad not presently providing passenger service to commence passenger service if railroad does not desire to do so. If the railroad has voluntarily undertaken to provide passenger service to the citizens of this state the commission would have the authority to require the railroad to maintain such public service and facilities as may be reasonable and just. However, the commission cannot require the railroad to operate at a loss. 1980 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 80-36.



- Power of Public Service Commission to increase franchise rates, 9 A.L.R. 1165; 28 A.L.R. 587; 29 A.L.R. 356.

Duty of railroad to operate side and switch tracks and spurs, 18 A.L.R. 722.

Power of state to require interstate carrier to make track connections with other roads, 22 A.L.R. 1078.

Special services or facilities afforded by shipper as a factor in carrier's rates, 25 A.L.R. 191.

Power of Public Service Commission to require railroad or street railway to extend its line or build new line to new territory, 30 A.L.R. 73.

Street easements as a factor in fixing a rate base for a street railway company, 49 A.L.R. 1477.

Power of Public Service Commission in respect to alteration or extension of passenger service, 70 A.L.R. 841.

Construction and effect of liability exemption or indemnity clause in spur track agreement, 20 A.L.R.2d 711.

Validity, construction, and effect of § 102(a) of Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act (49 USCS § 11501), 143 A.L.R. Fed. 347.

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