February 6, 2016

PEB 249 report – A win for SMART members and Rail Labor Coalition

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After nearly five years of bargaining, Presidential Emergency Board (PEB) 249, formed in November, 2015 to resolve the contract dispute between the Rail Labor Coalition (Coalition) and New Jersey’s mammoth commuter carrier, New Jersey Transit (NJT), sided with unionized workers in recommending the main points of the Coalition’s proposal, including retroactive wage payments and an [...]

NTSB unveils 2016 most wanted list

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​WASHINGTON – The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) unveiled its 2016 Most Wanted List of transportation safety improvements Wednesday, calling it a “road map from lessons learned to lives saved.” The list focuses on 10 broad safety improvements on which the NTSB has made recommendations that have not yet been implemented. Several items on the [...]

TTD: Why you should care about union court cases

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Yesterday (January 11), the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case you may have heard about — Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association (CTA). The gist of the case is this: many California public school teachers are members of CTA. Like all union members, California teachers can choose whether or not to join the union. However, [...]

SMART TD, BLET petition FRA for speed signs

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SMART TD and the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers & Trainmen (BLET) have submitted a petition to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) for rulemaking that mandates uniform warning speed signs in advance of a permanent speed restriction. SMART TD National Legislative Director John Risch said, “Not having speed signs would be like listing all the traffic [...]

Risch: Make sure you’re registered to vote!

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Dear Member, How often have you heard the phrase, “this is the most important election in our lifetime?” Plenty, I’m sure. The truth is, every election is important, with the stakes being higher in a presidential election year — especially for rail, transit and airline workers and retirees who are directly impacted by administration regulations and [...]

SMART TD weighs in on CP’s NS takeover bid

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“You don’t merge two railroads like this to create job opportunities, but to boost profits for a few investors,” stated John Risch, National Legislative Director of SMART Transportation Division, to Reuters reporter, Nick Carey. Click here to read the complete Reuters article.

Menards backpedals union busting threat after lawsuit

The Progressive Magazine reported Dec. 8, 2015, that in a union-busting move, Menards (a home improvement chain store) was threatening 60 percent pay cuts to managers if workers under their supervision organized a union in a 2015 managers contract. The Progressive Magazine later reported on Dec. 15, 2015, that Menards backpedalled under negative public scrutiny [...]

Revenue and riders up on Amtrak’s Southwest Chief

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The Denver Post reported that, during 2015, revenues and ridership rose amidst successful attempts at preserving Amtrak’s embattled Southwest Chief route.  Read the complete article here.

Gov. Cuomo unveils proposed LIRR expansion

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Railway Age reported that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo recently unveiled a proposal for major expansion and improvement of the Long Island Rail Road.  Read the complete article here.

Tri-Rail train hits truck

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WPTV.com reported that a Tri-Rail train hit a garbage truck Monday morning, Jan. 4, in Lake Worth, Fla.  More than twenty passengers were injured in the collision. Read the complete article here.