No new meetings planned for MCTS and union

Amalgamated Transit Union Local 998 and Milwaukee County Transit System representatives have yet to set a new meeting to negotiate a contract for the union’s employees.

The union stopped work for three days during the height of summer ridership last week because the groups could not come to an agreement on the proposed new contract.

According to ATU Local 998 vice president Michael Bautch, there won’t be a meeting this week and no meeting has been scheduled for the future.

The groups met just 10 times between February and June 30. The fact that it’s been a week is not unusual, said Brendan Conway, spokesman for MCTS.

“We want to do everything we can to prevent another strike,” Conway said, because it’s bad for riders.

The most recent package included wage increases and health care cost accommodations, but the union asked for $8 million more and wouldn’t budge on health care costs, he said.

About 40 percent of the system’s riders use the bus to get to work, Conway said.

The Milwaukee County Transit System has announced its plans to reimburse passengers with seven-day or 31-day passes during the work stoppage last week. That information, MCTS’ perspective on contract negotiations, as well as frequently asked questions, can be found here.

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