News pickup: CTA trade unions settle; another "derailment"; go vote!

News pickup: CTA trade unions settle; another "derailment"; go vote!
Nov. 5: News pickup: CTA trade unions settle; another "derailment"; go vote! Photo by Ricky (@raclae on Twitter)

Some thoughts on a couple CTA news items of interest:

CTA trade unions agree to work-rule changes. Twelve of the CTA's trade unions have agreed to money-saving work-rule changes in exchange for a no-layoff guarantee, the Sun-Times reports. The five-year deal will trim $5 million in health care costs and save $1.5 million more with rule changes. The changes include "employees working the afternoon and evening shifts will be[being] paid straight time and a “shift differential” instead of overtime." CTA President Forrest Claypool is hoping for similar results in negotiations the bus driver and rail motorman unions. Those talks are in the "final stages."

Second "derailment" hit same spot of Red Line Sunday. An eight car southbound Red Line train "derailed" mid-afternoon Sunday just north of Granville - near the same location where another train had switching problems on Oct. 1. I use "derailed" in quotes because the CTA says the wheels of the two different trains never left the track, and thus never "derailed." While the Oct. 1 incident was cleared in less than two hours, Sunday's mishap took more than 12 hours before service was fully restored. Methinks the CTA better get some inspectors to that area to see what's going on with those switches. (Thanks to Ricky at Twitter @raclae for the pic.)

Go vote! Use the CTA, walk, bike, hell, get in your car! Just go vote on Tuesday. Many polling places have changes in Chicago and Cook County. Go here to find your polling place. Oh yeah, and now go vote!

 

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  • This news story hit the areas early this morning from radio reports. But none of the trade union members, including myself, don't recall voting yes on the new contact. Specially the health insurance package, which now cost the employees thousands of dollars more each year. Is this just propaganda from the CTA?

  • In reply to Master Shake:

    If your union rules say that the membership has to vote on a contract offer, you are correct that the contract is not final until you vote.

    However, unless there is overwhelming sentiment at the ratification meeting that the representatives sold you out, probably it will be ratified. Usually in the CTA's case, the only alternative is arbitration, but given the grousing after that arbitrators ruling on layoffs in 2011, based on an interpretation of a contract an arbitrator wrote, I'm sure that the membership will also have that in mind.

  • So, I guess Claypool can't use "we don't have to pay budgeted raises so long as there isn't a contract" to balance a budget, which, three weeks after the other 2 service boards posted theirs, still isn't out. Not that public input means anything to the CTA, anyway Just ask Cheryl.

    As for the second derailment, there were a couple of ex-CTA employees on chicagobus.org who claimed after the first accident that there was nothing wrong at that location. None of then has chimed in the second time.

    And, as I have noted all over chicagonow.com, I early voted.

  • First up...kudos for the use of "methinks!"

    Second: Is it not a derailment if the a train car's wheels are on a different track? That's definitely seems to be what's going on in the photo you attached. In that case it's not a derailment. I never knew CTA was able to bend the rules of physics to its will!! Is urban maglev far behind?

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