(1) The department of transportation shall prepare and periodically update a state rail plan, the objective of which is to identify, evaluate, and encourage essential rail services. The plan shall:
(a) Identify and evaluate mainline capacity issues;
(b) Identify and evaluate port-to-rail access and congestion issues;
(c) Identify and evaluate those rail freight lines that may be abandoned or have recently been abandoned;
(d) Quantify the costs and benefits of maintaining rail service on those lines that are likely to be abandoned;
(e) Establish priorities for determining which rail lines should receive state support. The priorities should include the anticipated benefits to the state and local economy, the anticipated cost of road and highway improvements necessitated by the abandonment or capacity constraints of the rail line, the likelihood the rail line receiving funding can meet operating costs from freight charges, surcharges on rail traffic, and other funds authorized to be raised by a county or port district, and the impact of abandonment or capacity constraints on changes in energy utilization and air pollution;
(f) Identify and describe the state's rail system;
(g) Prepare a state freight rail system map;
(h) Identify and evaluate rail commodity flows and traffic types;
(i) Identify lines and corridors that have been rail banked or preserved; and
(j) Identify and evaluate other issues affecting the state's rail traffic.
(2) The state rail plan may be prepared in conjunction with the rail plan prepared by the department pursuant to the federal Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act.