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In late May, Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) members ratified their first-ever labor contract with the Western New York & Pennsylvania Railroad LLC (WNYP). The four-year contract governs about a dozen WNYP workers and runs through Dec. 31, 2021. The pact establishes hourly wage rates, overtime pay, and health and welfare benefits. It also provides due process protections for BLET members that define a process to be followed when disciplinary charges are levied due to an alleged rule violation, union officials said in a press release.
Prior to the contract ratification, there were three pay rates for both locomotive engineers and conductors at WNYP. The new pact transitions wage scales to a single engineer hourly rate and a conductor hourly rate by 2021. Over the term of the contract, wage increases will range from 15.91 percent to 28.44 percent for engineers, and from 15.91 percent to 33.75 percent for conductors, BLET officials said.
Owned by Livonia, Avon & Lakeville Railroad Corp., WNYP operates 190 miles of mainline track from Hornell, New York, to Meadville, Pennsylvania. The short line also operates a 90-mile branch line from Machias, New York, to North Driftwood, Pennsylvania. The railroad launched operations in 2001 after concluding a long-term lease with Norfolk Southern Railway and obtaining certain property tax abatements from the Southern Tier Extension Rail Authority.