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Transit union talks resume

Sun., Aug. 16, 2009, midnight

OAKLAND, Calif. – Management of the San Francisco Bay Area’s commuter rail system and the union representing its train operators and station agents returned to the bargaining table Saturday, hoping to prevent a strike.

Leaders of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555 announced earlier in the week that they would strike Monday after Bay Area Rapid Transit’s board of directors imposed work terms that the union says amount to a 7 percent pay cut.

Two other BART unions already have approved new contracts, and BART spokesman Linton Johnson said ATU should follow suit.

“They can be the heroes in this by not having a strike,” he said.

But Jesse Hunt, president of Local 1555, said the union has been asked to make more than its fair share of concessions.

Still, Hunt sounded an optimistic note, saying, “We are very close and are hoping to get this done.”


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