The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) on Oct. 27 announced that it has reached a tentative agreement with TWU Local 234 on a new contract for employees in the City, Suburban, and Frontier Transit Divisions, allowing for service to continue without disruption.
According to the agency, the agreement will be finalized pending ratification by TWU Local 234 members and approval by the SEPTA Board.
“Negotiations were focused on finding a way to recognize employees’ hard work and ensure that SEPTA is in the best possible position to build ridership and address a looming fiscal cliff when federal COVID relief funds run out next year,” SEPTA said.
“We are pleased to reach an agreement with union leadership on a contract that is fair to our employees and financially responsible for SEPTA,” said SEPTA Board Chairman Pasquale T. Deon Sr. “I look forward to the SEPTA Board’s vote on the contract at its next meeting.”
“SEPTA’s frontline employees keep our system running every day, and this contract reflects their dedication,” said SEPTA CEO and General Manager Leslie S. Richards. “There was an urgency to get this agreement in place, and I would like to thank the negotiating teams on both sides of the table for working around the clock to make it happen.”
News of the tentative agreement follows the announcement on Oct. 24 regarding national presidents of Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) and the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers, Transportation Division (SMART-TD), which represents the conductors, having authorized strike votes on SEPTA “after months of mediated talks [with the agency] failed to produce progress toward agreements,” according to a report by The Philadelphia Inquirer.
With the tentative contract in place, SEPTA says its riders are assured that there will not be a work stoppage next week. All services will operate on regular schedules.