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3/19/2010


Rail News: Rail Industry Trends
Federal arbitrator sets CN-TCRC contract terms; FRA OKs part of ASLRRA's hours-of-service petition



Today, CN announced it will begin implementing a federal arbitration ruling that sets terms and conditions for a new three-year agreement with the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC).

Covering 1,700 locomotive engineers in Canada and retroactive to Jan. 1, 2009, the agreement provides wages increases of 1.8 percent in 2009, 2.4 percent in 2010 and 2.6 percent in 2011. The contract also includes dental plan improvements that take effect April 1.

Following a CN-TCRC contract dispute and five-day locomotive engineer strike last year, the railroad and union agreed to binding arbitration of wage and benefit issues if renewed negotiations failed.

Meanwhile, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has granted initial approval to parts of the American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association’s (ASLRRA) petition for an hours-of-service waiver, according to the association. Filed in July 2009, the waiver seeks relief for regionals and short lines from new hours-of-service regulations included in the 2008 Railway Safety Improvement Act.

The partial waiver granted by the FRA allows employees at small railroads to work six consecutive days with one day off under certain conditions. Without the waiver, the new hours-of-service regulations would require the employees to take two days off if they work six straight days. The waiver does not apply to work assignments that extend into a time period between midnight and 6 a.m.

The FRA plans to take action on other parts of the waiver soon, according to the ASLRRA.

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