Despite strike talk, Metro running as usual Monday morning

July 1, 2013 

A rumored strike of Metro transit workers that was expected to start Monday morning has not materialized.

According to Metro Bus and MetroLink passengers, drivers told commuters last week that they wouldn't report for work this morning at the latest development in their bogged down negotiations with the transportation provider.

A unioin leader denied that over the weekend, and Metro spokeswoman Patti Beck workers were on the job at the normal 4:15 starting time.

Members of Amalgamated Transit Union 788 authorized a strike about three weeks ago while they continued to negotiate with Metro through a mediator. According to Mike Breihan, president of the union's local chapter, the workers' contract expired in June 2009. Since then wages have stagnated while health care and pension costs increased.

Metro president and chief executive officer John Nations said alterations to pensions and benefits are needed to control costs and that the transportation system's other workers have agreed to changes.

The local union represents about 1,200 bus and MetroLink drivers, mechanics and clerical workers.

The week of the Fourth of July holiday is usually Metro's busiest of the year because of all the people who ride trains and buses to Fair St. Louis downtown.

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