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Negotiations continue for Valley Metro operators
Contract talks between the union representing Valley bus drivers and the Valley Metro’s system manager are on hold Monday. The two groups decided to take a day off and meet again on Tuesday. First Transit and the Amalgamated Transit Union will return to the negotiating table at 8 a.m. A First Transit spokesperson said some progress was made during the a meeting on Sunday, but the groups need more time to agree on a final contract. The talks include bus driver wages and health benefits.
“We stand behind our commitment to recognize the existing wages and comparable health benefits at the existing collective bargaining agreement rate and we’re looking to extend the current terms of the agreement for at least another 30 days while we continue to negotiate,” said First Transit spokesperson Maurice Harris.
If an agreement is not reached by Tuesday night, ATU members are expected to boycott. If that happens, 40 East Valley routes in Tempe, Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert and into parts of Phoenix and Scottsdale will lose service.