The Muni sick-out that resulted in transit delays and hundreds of doctor's notes earlier this month was not, apparently, a very useful bargaining tactic. After bailing on their contract arbitration meeting last Monday, the Transit Worker's Union broke off negotiation talks last Wednesday, prompting SFMTA Transportation Director Ed Reiskin to issue an ultimatum letting drivers know that no one will get a raise if the union doesn't get agree on a contract by the end of June.
"We were extremely disappointed that the union refused to meet with the neutral mediator last week," SFMTA flack Paul Rose told the Examiner on Sunday. "We will continue to reach out to the union this week to resume talks so we can work together to achieve a timely contract that will reward our operators with deserved wage increases and other important benefits."
If an agreement is not reached before the 30th, the Muni operators will revert to their current contract for for at least another year. As of Friday, the latest proposal offered a raise between 10.3 and 11.3 percent over two years, with operators giving 7.5 percent to their pensions. It would also ensure Muni drivers remain the second-highest paid transit workers in the country.
Reiskin also warned that failing to reach an agreement through arbitration would force the union to start collecting members' dues on its own, which are currently deducted from their paychecks.
Despite the requests to get back to the negotiation table, the union had not commented as of Monday morning.