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Rail News: Labor

BLET members bless NS contract; Railroad Retirement Board to reorganize field service

Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) members recently ratified a six-year agreement with Norfolk Southern Corp. by a 1,894-1,091 vote

Covering about 4,800 engineers, the contract provides general wage increases of 19 percent and bonuses that members can earn based on NS' financial performance. Workers will receive a 5 percent pay raise on July 1, 2009; 3 percent hike on July 1, 2010; 5 percent increase on July 1, 2011; and 2 percent raises on July 1, 2012, July 1, 2013, and July 1, 2014.

The wage increases "put NS engineers in line with engineers covered by the national agreement as of July 1, 2009," BLET officials said in a prepared statement.

The pact also calls for lump sum bonus payments totaling $4,700, health and welfare benefit improvements, and work rule changes.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) plans to reorganize its field service Oct. 1.

The agency's 53 field offices no longer will be organized under three regional offices. Instead, field service will be reorganized into 12 networks and become part of a nationwide management structure located at RRB's Chicago headquarters.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 9/11/2008