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Chicago Transit Authority, Construction Unions Reach Deal. Mayor Emanuel Touts Cost Savings.

Earlier this week, the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) announced that new contracts have been reached with 1,200 members of 12 different unions: IBEW Local 134, IBEW Local 9, United Association (plumbes) Local 130, Carpenter’s Local 1027, International Association of Machinists (IAM) District 8, IUPAT District Council 14, Bricklayers Local 21, Sheetmetal Workers Local 73, Pipefitters’ Local 597, Boilermakers Local Lodge 1247, Teamsters Local 700, and IAM Local 701.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel says the deals will allow the city to save millions. Concessions by the unions, including scheduling flexibility and health care costs, are said to be saving the city $6.5 million a year:

Those working afternoon and evening shifts will be paid at straight time rates unless they actually work overtime, and work rules that prevent members of one union from working on a job involving another local’s jurisdiction will be eased.

In addition, two paid holidays, for birthdays and hiring anniversary dates, will be replaced with one personal day “and great flexibility in the use of vacation time,” according to officials.

The concessions must still be approved by union membership which observers see as a formality.

A contract has yet to be worked out with the Amalgamated Transit Union, though, which represents the city’s 6,000+ bus drivers and train conductors. A deal is expected soon and both sides seem optimistic.


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