The on-again off-again nightmare of last year's BART strikes and BART strike threats have come to an end as the final and largest union gave their sign-off on the contract this week. Also this week some state senators rejected a proposed bill that would have outlawed such strikes for all transit unions, including BART, CalTrans, and VTA.
The bill was proposed in the Senate Public Employees and Retirement Committee and was roundly rejected by the Democratic majority on Monday, as Bay City News reports. It had been proposed by Republican Senator Bob Huff of Diamond Bar, in southern California, and two Bay Area senators, Leland Yee and Jim Beall were among those who voted it down. One thing critics suggested was that the bill was not "solution-oriented" and did not require binding arbitration.
The BART Board of Directors may be mulling its own initiative to ban strikes in the future, or at least such an initiative was being discussed last month. BART Board member Joel Keller has been saying that things with the unions are "out of hand" and he believes that "fact-finding and arbitration are better than a strike." We've yet to hear anything further in the way of an actual proposal.