The news is out, America's largest Class II railroad is officially a fallen flag. The Surface Transportation Board announced its approval today of Canadian Pacific's plan to purchase Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad, Iowa Chicago and Eastern Railroad and Cedar American Rail Holdings. The purchase was first proposed a year ago, and the last day of independent operations for DM&E and IC&E is currently scheduled for October 30, 2008. Already, CP power is showing up more frequently on DM&E/IC&E tracks. Now, how long will it take CP to finish the job DM&E started and get new track built into the Powder River Basin? We're still not sure, but that was one of the reasons that was given a year ago for the purchase in the first place, so my guess is that it won't be too much longer.