O.C. Transportation Authority, union make deal

The Orange County Transportation Authority Board of Directors and Teamsters Local 952 announced today they have reached a deal on a new three-year collective bargaining agreement for their maintenance and service workers.

After two years of bus service cuts and employee reductions, the contract will allow Orange County’s public transit system to continue emerging from the worst financial crisis in its history.

The contract calls for no change in wages the first two years. In the third year, there is a possibility to reopen the contract and discuss a wage increase if positive financial progress is made.

“The men and women who work tirelessly to keep our buses properly maintained are critical to ensuring the safety and reliability of our transit system,” said OCTA Chairman Jerry Amante, also the mayor of Tustin, in a press statement. “I’m very pleased we could reach an agreement that meets the needs of our employees and allows for the long-term financial sustainability of our bus service.”

Members of Teamsters Local 952 voted over the weekend to approve the contract and the OCTA board voted to approve the contract at its meeting today.

“We look forward to working with OCTA to restore service and get as many of our members back to work as possible,” Patrick D. Kelly, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 952. “We think there are some positive opportunities with the governor-elect and we appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding.”