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MTA's 'Insulting' Contract Offer To Unionized Transit Workers ‘Sets Stage For Heated Battle’

Published Tuesday, August 20, 2019
by Vincent Baronevin/
MTA's 'Insulting' Contract Offer To Unionized Transit Workers ‘Sets Stage For Heated Battle’

(NEW YORK CITY) - The Union representing Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Bus and Subway Employees on Monday (August 19th) firmly rejected a contract offer from the Transit Authority, calling the proposal “insulting.”

The cash-strapped MTA pitched a host of changes to Transport Workers Union (TWU) Local 100 and its roughly 40,000 MTA-employed Members, including doubling Employee contributions to health care and contracting out either all or some work relating to station and car cleaning, construction flagging and capital construction, according to the Union.

"If the MTA's goal ‘was to enrage every Transit Worker in the city then they've done it,’" said TWU Local 100 President Tony Utano said.  "We ‘will do everything in our power to fight these insulting contract demands.’  Transit Workers ‘have worked too hard to improve service - and this Union has worked too hard over decades to establish a decent standard of living for our Members - to now go backwards.’"

Talks are set to continue as tensions rise between the MTA's Board and the Union, whose Members have worked without a contract since this Spring.

The MTA recently published two commissioned reports that the Union has taken issue with.

One - the reorganization plan from AlixPartners - in part calls for the addition of executives alongside the elimination of roughly 2,700 positions at the MTA.

A second report - an investigation into MTA overtime - found the MTA has failed to properly administer and track Employee time-keeping and called for a change to work rules to help reduce ballooning payroll expenses.

While the Union published “confidential” negotiating documents Monday, the MTA has consistently declined to discuss the matter publicly.

The negotiations continue as the MTA stares down a $1 billion shortfall in 2022, with officials warning that service cuts could come as early as this Fall.

The reorganization plan, already a difficult task to execute, would only cut that 2022 deficit in half, the MTA estimates.

The Transit Authority had presented a four-year contract to the Union with 2% general wage increases through 2022, according to the proposal published by the TWU.

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