PNWR, BLET Ratify Contract

Written by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
(Photo Credit: Cory Rusch, BLET Division 659, Courtesy of BLET)

(Photo Credit: Cory Rusch, BLET Division 659, Courtesy of BLET)

A new on-property agreement has been ratified between 55 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) members and Genesee & Wyoming’s Portland & Western Railroad (PNWR), a 516-mile Class II that operates throughout Washington and Oregon and interchanges with BNSF (at Vancouver, Wash., and Portland, Ore.) and Union Pacific (at Eugene, Ore., and Portland, Ore.).

A tentative agreement was announced in December.

The union on Jan. 15 reported that the new five-year contract governs rates of pay, benefits and work rules for the PNWR members, who belong to BLET Division 416 and are a part of the BLET’s Union Pacific-Western Region General Committee of Adjustment.

These members will earn general wage increases of 21.5% (23.4% compounded) over the life of the contract (6% in 2024, 3% in 2025, 3% in 2026, 4% in 2027, and 5.5% in 2028), according to BLET.

Other proposed contractual improvements include:

  • Addition of Martin Luther King Day as an 11th holiday.
  • One extra PL day and one additional day of vacation.
  • Increased training pay from $9 to $35 per day.
  • Basic day reduced from 10 hours to eight hours, with overtime accumulating after 40 hours each week.
  • Elimination of the 80% rate of pay for probationary employees, so all employees receive 100% rate of pay.
  • Increased PPE allowance to $300 per year.

According to BLET, the negotiating team comprised National Vice President Gary Best, General Chairman Steve Leyshon, Vice General Chairman Will Wallace, and Division 416 Local Chairman Matt Keene.

Tags: , , , , , , ,