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12/13/2012


Rail News: Labor
Canadian Pacific, Teamsters' MOW division reach tentative agreement; BLET members ratify Montana Rail Link pact



Canadian Pacific and the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference-Maintenance of Way Employees Division (TCRC-MWED) recently reached a tentative five-year agreement covering 2,600 maintenance-of-way workers.

Details of the pact will be released following ratification, CP and TCRC-MWED officials said in a prepared statement. A memorandum of settlement will be sent to the union members next week and ratification vote results are expected in mid-January.

"The Teamsters' bargaining committee unanimously endorses this tentative agreement and is recommending the membership ratify it," said TCRC-MWED President Bill Brehl.

Meanwhile, Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) members have ratified a new agreement with Montana Rail Link (MRL) covering about 400 workers. The previous contract expired in April 2011.

The pact provides six general wage increases totaling 18.6 percent — a compounded value of 20.1 percent — over the life of the contract, which expires April 1, 2016, BLET officials said in a prepared statement. Workers will also receive a $1,500 signing bonus. The wage increases, which took effect Dec. 1, include retroactive payments for affected employees.

The agreement also governs numerous work rules and employee health and welfare benefits, and maintains a provision that two locomotive engineers remain in the cab on trains operating in road service.

In addition, the BLET obtained a commitment from MRL to cover all engineer and assistant engineer positions with qualified engineers, and maintain a small surplus of qualified engineers to meet peak service demands, union officials said.

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