Quantcast
Connect with us

Judge blocks BART subway workers’ proposed strike in San Francisco through October

Published

on

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – A judge on Sunday blocked a threatened San Francisco-area rail worker strike that could have disabled a critical part of the region’s transportation system serving 400,000 daily passengers.

The ruling by San Francisco Superior Court Judge Curtis Karnow to bar Bay Area Rapid Transit District workers from striking took effect immediately and remains in place through October 10, 2013. It provides a cooling-off period in the contentious labor negotiations.

BART management and the unions representing its 2,600 workers have been in talks for more than four months and have been millions of dollars apart on a potential settlement.

The judge issued the injunction following a rare Sunday-morning hearing, which he said was held to determine whether a strike would “significantly disrupt public transportation services and endanger the public’s health, safety or welfare.”

“This hearing has nothing at all to do with the merits of this dispute between the unions and BART,” Karnow said.

Neither BART management nor the unions objected to the injunction in court.

ADVERTISEMENT

California Governor Jerry Brown sought the 60-day injunction on Friday.

The strike would have been the unions’ second walkout of the summer.

The BART rail system was shut down for 4-1/2 days in July when union workers walked off the job, creating severe roadway congestion and forcing commuters to miss work or crowd onto a limited number of other public transportation options.

Brown averted a proposed strike last Sunday by appointing a three-person board to investigate the BART labor feud. The board was charged with hearing from both sides and reporting back to the governor on its findings.

ADVERTISEMENT

After a heated public meeting on Wednesday, the board found that a strike would result in “significant harm to the public’s health, safety and welfare,” Brown said on Friday.

The public safety threat determination was needed for Brown to seek the cooling-off order.

BART management, which had supported the cooling-off time, reported a $62 million gap in contract terms at Wednesday’s meeting.

Union officials, who had opposed the cooling-off period, said there was a $56 million difference in proposals.

ADVERTISEMENT

Management has said it offered workers a 9 percent pay raise over four years but wants employees to pay 5 percent of their salaries toward pensions. Employees currently do not contribute to their pensions.

The unions have said they want a 15 percent raise over three years and that additional pay increases would be needed to offset the higher benefit contributions.

BART management says the average employee gets an annual salary of $79,500 plus $50,800 in benefits, and it is concerned the cost of benefits will continue to climb after increasing by nearly 200 percent in 10 years.

Union representatives peg salaries of BART workers at $64,000 on average, saying that management’s figures included higher salaries for managers.

(By Laila Kearney. Editing by Kevin Gray, Ellen Wulfhorst, Jackie Frank and Cynthia Osterman)

[El Cerrito Del Norte BART Station via Wikipedia Commons]

Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Facebook

‘This American dream’: Pain overwhelms family of drowned migrants

Published

on

"They had this American dream," sobbed Rosa Ramirez after images of her drowned son and granddaughter, discovered face-down on the banks of the Rio Grande between Mexico and the United States, shocked the world on Wednesday.

The poignant pictures of Oscar Alberto Martinez and his toddler daughter Valeria -- not yet two years old -- has sparked outrage back home in El Salvador, where around 200 migrants like them leave for the United States daily, preparing to take similar risks.

"The pain has been immense. I still can't believe that my boy and my little granddaughter are dead, they only wanted to get to the United States.... they had this American dream -- to achieve a better life," Oscar's mother told AFP.

Continue Reading

Facebook

Venezuela government says thwarted attempted ‘coup’

Published

on

Venezuela's socialist government said Wednesday it had derailed an attempted coup, claiming the United States, Colombia and Chile colluded in a military plot to assassinate President Nicolas Maduro and install a general and former defense minister in his place.

Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez said the plan involved active and retired army officers and was to have been executed between Sunday and Monday this past weekend.

"We were in all the meetings to plan the coup d'Etat. We were in all the conferences," Rodriguez said, suggesting that government informers had infiltrated the alleged plotters during planning meetings.

Continue Reading
 

CNN

Democrats believe Mueller testimony could be tipping point for impeachment: CNN

Published

on

On Wednesday, CNN congressional correspondent Manu Raju reported that some House Democrats view special counsel Robert Mueller's upcoming public testimony to the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committees in July as a potential tipping point that could sway both Democratic leaders and the American people in favor of opening an impeachment probe.

"Democrats who support opening up an impeachment inquiry believe this could bolster the calls to open up formal proceedings, perhaps shift public opinion, perhaps encourage the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to move off of her opposition to opening up an impeachment probe because of what Bob Mueller will say," said Raju.

Continue Reading
 
 

Copyright © 2019 Raw Story Media, Inc. PO Box 21050, Washington, D.C. 20009 | Masthead | Privacy Policy | For corrections or concerns, please email [email protected]

I need your help.

The 2020 election needs you. There are 18 months until the election, and the Supreme Court is on the line. I'm trying to add journalists to do more exclusive reports. Let me get rid of the ads for you, and put your support toward 100% progressive reporting. Want to ensure your voice is heard? Join me and restore the power of hard-hitting progressive journalism.

HELP TAKE BACK AMERICA
close-link