The state-owned North Carolina Railroad Company is trying to collect rent from hundreds of property owners it says have encroached on a 200-foot right of way from Morehead City to Charlotte.
The railroad is using mapping technology to show its property along the 317-mile line. Railroad President Scott Saylor says he's looking for revenue. Saylor says he wants to make sure the corridor is available for all future uses.
Railroad spokeswoman Kat Christian says the line has 233 lease agreements from small businesses and about 120 businesses have been sent letters but haven't signed or responded.
Cabarrus Representative Jeff Barnhart says it appears small businesses are being targeted.
Saylor says the problems arose from 150 years of surveying errors and a lack of oversight.