SMART

CalSTA backs $224 million in transit and intercity rail grants

The California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA) announced on June 30, 2015 this year’s recipients of $224 million in competitive grants that support high-quality public transportation and reduce greenhouse gas emissions causing worldwide climate change. The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund is providing funding for these climate investments, using proceeds from the state’s cap-and-trade auctions.

SMART will have new president May 1

One of the largest rail labor unions—the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART)—will have a new president May 1 upon the unexpected retirement April 30 of SMART General President Joseph J. Nigro.

SMART CFO: Project fiscally sound

Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) service “is two years away from the start of passenger service between the Sonoma County Airport and downtown San Rafael” in northern California, and the project “is on solid financial footing,” according to SMART Chief Financial Officer Erin McGrath.

BLET in catbird seat over crew consist

News item: Vouchsafed to work jointly in gaining legislation or regulation mandating two crew members on every freight train are the Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Union (SMART) and the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET).

When you get a good deal, take it

Arbitrator Robert O. Harris told the United Transportation Union (UTU) and railroads in 1991, then unable to agree at the bargaining table, “Welcome to the oldest established craps game in Washington. Like the suckers in ‘Guys and Dolls,’ you are risking your futures on the roll of the dice [when you fail to make a voluntary agreement].”