Transit union head says he will ‘cause havoc’ during negotiations
The MTA’s largest union is planning to “cause havoc” to traffic with a rally outside the agency’s Lower Manhattan headquarters at the end of October amid contract negotiations with the agency.
“We got to fill those streets at 2 Broadway, stop traffic and cause havoc,” Transport Workers Union Local 100 President Tony Utano said in an August 29 speech to members that was posted on the union’s website Thursday.
With looming deficits and ballooning overtime costs, the MTA has sought to rein in growing personnel costs embedded in the TWU contract.
The agency has attributed its soaring overtime costs to low worker availability — the average unionized bus and subway employee missed 54 days of work in 2018, The Post revealed in August.
But union officials rejected management’s August 14 contract offer, which would maintain 2 percent annual pay increases while doubling worker healthcare contributions, cut back on vacation days and overtime, and require that worker availability improve by at least three days by the end of 2020.
Union leaders are promising to escalate if the MTA doesn’t ease its push.
“Unless the MTA backs off the ludicrous demands… there will be more aggressive actions than a rally,” TWU International president John Samuelsen told The Wall Street Journal.
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