Management & Operations

Striking L.A. bus mechanics to vote on contract

Posted on November 3, 2003

Striking bus mechanics in Los Angeles County will vote on a contract offer made last week by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), their union leader said in an Associated Press report Monday. "If the membership accepts the offer, we will return to work," said Neil Silver, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1277. About 2,200 bus mechanics walked off the job Oct. 14, and drivers and train operators refused to cross picket lines, halting bus, train and subway service to some 500,00 Los Angeles County commuters. MTA officials estimated the two sides were $98 million apart on key issues of wages and health care benefits when talks broke off last week, said the AP. The MTA said its final offer included no raises during the first year of a three-year contract, followed by raises of 2.5% in the second and third years. The agency also offered $4.7 million to help bail out the union's ailing health care fund, which MTA officials say they believe is mismanaged. Healthcare has been the main sticking point in negotiations.

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