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6/20/2002



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Tex Mex workers to cast representation ballot between UTU, BLE


The Texas Mexican Railway Co.'s train and engine-service employees soon will choose United Transportation Union or Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers as their union representative, according to a June 20 news item on UTU's Web site.


National Mediation Board (NMB) June 14 mailed ballots to about 120 Tex Mex workers, who currently are represented by UTU; NMB plans to count ballots July 15.


BLE in 1999 filed an application with NMB to represent Tex Mex locomotive engineers, who were represented by UTU along with train-service employees. NMB in March 2000 dismissed BLE's application, ruling engineers had insufficient interest.


BLE this year filed with NMB to represent Tex Mex's train and engine-service employees in light of the board's March 2000 conclusion that the appropriate craft on Tex Mex is train and engine-service workers. NMB May 31 ordered a representation election, ruling that it again found a community of interest on Tex Mex.


Meanwhile, NMB still is considering UTU's request for a winner-take-all representation election on Kansas City Southern.


UTU officials believe BLE's application to seek a representation election at Tex Mex for train and engine-service employees means BLE officials recognize that historical distinctions between crafts have been blurred. This would supports UTU's argument in seeking a KCS representation election, union officials said.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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