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BNSF and BLET negotiators agree on wage and rules issues

Written by William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief

BNSF and the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen have reached a tentative agreement on wage and work rules issues that BLET says gives its members "the security of a five-year agreement, additional income and additional time off without a single giveback or rule change." Details of  the agreement were not announced. It does not cover health and welfare issues, which will be addressed in industry-wide negotiations that will begin Jan. 1, 2010.

Stephen Speagle, BLET vice president assigned to work with BNSF, said, "The agreement is not all we wanted, no agreement ever is, but in this time of economic troubles and hardship, it is an honor for me and for the four BLET general chairmen to be able to present" the proposal.