Photo Courtesy of Marc Hermann/MTA New York City Transit
The MTA and TWU Local 100 have reached a tentative agreement that provides a new four-year contract for more than 37,000 transit employees.
By Forum Staff
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Transit Workers Union Local 100 have reached a tentative agreement that provides a new four-year contract for more than 37,000 transit employees, both parties announced Thursday.
The contract covers more than 30,000 TWU employees working for New York City Transit and 6,600 employees of the Manhattan and Bronx Surface Transit Operating Authority, which include bus operators, maintainers, cleaners, maintainers and other employees who work out of seven bus depots in Manhattan and the Bronx.
Under the terms of the agreement, which is subject to ratification by the union’s members and approval by the MTA Board, NYC Transit will pay an average net wage increase of 2.3 percent each year through May 2023. Before giving effect to health savings and increases in availability, a 1-percent increase in wages is approximately equal to $36 million, offset by $44 million in savings in the health plan and availability. Once the contract is ratified, workers would receive a 2-percent increase for 2019, a 2.25-percent increase in 2020, a 2.5-percent increase in 2021, and a 2.75-percent increase in 2022.
The deal includes a suite of provisions that, combined and enacted in partnership with the TWU, will ensure the MTA delivers on advancements in operations while realizing savings for the financial plan. This includes a commitment to a one-and-a-half day improvement in employee availability—the number of days an employee is available and reporting to work—which will deliver an estimated $17 million in annual savings to the MTA. Availability has steadily decreased since 2000, the agency reported. After an improvement of one day in employee availability is achieved, any additional savings will be jointly shared between the TWU and MTA.
The agreement also includes a recognition of overtime equalization as an important priority for both the MTA and TWU, to ensure that opportunities for overtime are equally available to eligible employees and that overtime is efficiently allocated. The MTA has indicated that it will also enforce existing contractual agreements in order to achieve this priority.
The pact allows for mutual swaps of shifts between employees in similar job classes across all TWU members for the first time, giving employees increased flexibility in scheduling while ensuring sufficient coverage for critical operational roles and minimizing overtime.
The union made worker safety a priority issue during contract talks. The TWU and MTA pledged to work together to increase public awareness of assaults on transit workers, advocate for increased usage of existing provisions in State law that classify worker assaults as a felony, and create a task force that includes partners in law enforcement to ensure these issues receive necessary attention and that all parties have a sustained focus on solutions. NYCT and TWU will also cooperate to explore the use of new technologies to increase track worker and flagger safety, the parties noted Thursday.
MTA Chairman Pat Foye said the new contract “reflects the hard work of thousands of transit employees who have helped us reach the highest on-time subway performance in more than half a decade, while providing a fair deal for taxpayers and our more than eight million daily customers.”