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Rail News: Labor

SMART-TD members ratify crew-consist pact with UP; Coleman elected union's general president

SMART General President Michael Coleman (right) tours the Blue Oval City project, Ford Motor Co.'s future automotive manufacturing ecosystem in Stanton, Tennessee.
Photo – smart-union.org


SMART-Transportation Division members represented by GO-953 on Union Pacific Railroad’s Pacific Northwest and Idaho territories have ratified a crew-consist agreement that preserves the in-cab conductor position, union officials announced this week.

The in-cab conductor position had been at the center of a court battle and chosen by UP for transfer to a nomadic "expediter" role, SMART-TD officials said in a press release.

The three crafts participating in the vote approved the new contract with more than two-thirds voting in favor of ratification. The ratified contract includes:

• a $27,000 signing bonus;
• continued requirement of the conductor’s position in the locomotive cab;
• 30 years of protections for brakemen/switchmen who have assignments abolished;
• continued use of brakemen/switchmen as needed;
• additional pay for assigned road and yard service performed with a reduced crew;
• expanded utility position that is paid $50.00 per hour and has a set schedule; and
• overtime in pool freight.

Meanwhile, Michael Coleman, a longtime SMART member with decades of leadership experience at the local and international level, assumed the position of SMART general president yesterday. He succeeds Joseph Sellers, who retired May 31.

Coleman was elected general president by the SMART General Executive Council. He began his career as a SMART sheet metal worker in 1985, when he joined what was then Local 65 in Cleveland, Ohio.