BLET, SEPTA OK new pact

Locomotive engineers working on the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority's (SEPTA) regional rail line ratified a new, five-year collective bargaining agreement on August 23.

"This contract provides SEPTA engineers with annual wage increases of three percent," said Richard Dixon, General Chairman of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen's (BLET) SEPTA general committee of adjustment. "In addition to wage increases, we won a significant change in the pay awarded to engineers for their federally required certification. Instead of a $4 a day flat fee, they will now receive a 50 cent per hour increase for the certification."

Locomotive engineers on SEPTA also won a reduction in the amount they pay for health care coverage. They will now pay just one percent of 40 hours of their wages per week for health care coverage effective August of 2008. Until then, they will pay nothing towards health care coverage.

"Locomotive engineers on SEPTA's regional transit system work very long hours, usually an average of 62 hours per week," Dixon said. "We've been working on getting a new contract since August of 2005 and our members deserve all of the improvements in this contract."

The BLET represents more than 195 locomotive engineers on SEPTA's regional transit system, which services Philadelphia and its outlying suburban communities.



© 2006 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen