BART management, unions meet over weekend, but no agreement reached

Negotiations to continue every day as midnight Thursday deadline approaches

BART management and union negotiators met throughout the weekend but no agreements were announced when the talks closed down last night.

BART spokesman Linton Johnson said management has "an internal goal" of reaching an agreement with its 2,800-plus union workers by Thursday, which will represent four months since contract talks began on April 1.

He also said negotiations will continue every day this week with BART committed to achieving $100 million in cost savings in order to cope with a massive budget deficit, estimated to be $310 million during the next four years.

However, Johnson said management doesn't have any plans at this point to impose a new contract if an agreement isn't reached by Thursday.

Asked what will happen if there's no agreement by Thursday, Johnson said, "We'll ask that question on Thursday."

Carlos Rivera, the spokesman for the transit agency's largest union, Service Employees International Union Local 1021, which represents about 1,400 mechanics, custodians, safety inspectors and clerical employees, said, "We definitely want to have an agreement" by Thursday and "the last thing we want is a strike."

Members of BART's three largest unions voted by overwhelming margins last month to authorize a strike, but there are no plans to strike at this time.

Johnson said contract talks this week "have been good in some areas but not so good in other areas."

Johnson said management is committed to achieving $100 million in labor cost savings in order to cope with its large budget deficit, which is estimated to be $310 million over four years.

Rivera said union leaders want management to look more closely at their proposal, which they say will save $760 million in long-term savings.

Bay City News contributed to this story


Like this comment
Posted by didsguster
a resident of Civic Square
on Jul 27, 2009 at 2:59 pm

Replace the slackers with the out-of-workers who would be very grateful and half the headache. These slackers are already overpaid. But the union pushes & pushes telling them they are SO
great. LOCK them OUT

Like this comment
Posted by Lucky Guy
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Jul 28, 2009 at 10:22 am

I would like to see an explanation of what the $760 million in cost savings that the BART workers want to explore with BART Management looks like. But then again BART Management knows "everything" or so they think. Could it be in areas that might risk Management pay reductions or job loss. Could there be redundancy job waste? Always two sides to things. Didsguster must be a Manager who has to rely on Spell Check.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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