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Rail News: Labor

BLET ratifies new contract with Illinois Railway


The Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen members have unanimously ratified a new contract with the Illinois Railway, BLET officials announced last week.

The contract provides fully retroactive general wage increases of 22% over the life of the agreement, BLET officials said in a press release. It also guarantees all members will be eligible for five weeks of vacation after 11 years of employment, two paid personal days, an additional holiday and secured overtime pay rates for working rest days and holidays. The agreement covers 50 engineers and conductors.

The union also "secured a major improvement to how overtime pay is handled," BLET officials said. Now, members will earn overtime pay of one-and-a-half times the normal rate after eight hours instead of after 50 hours under the previous agreement.

The new contract also removes the previous wage step rate and adds training pay and a 30-minute lunch period.

Illinois Railway is an OmniTRAX Inc. subsidiary and operates along 113 miles of track. The short line interchanges with BNSF Railway Co., Canadian Pacific, CN, CSX and Union Pacific Railroad.

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More News from 2/13/2023