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Archive for July, 2010

AC Transit bus drivers’ contract dispute moves to court

The latest labor dispute over cost cutting in the public transit industry moves to a court in Oakland today when a judge hears arguments for and against a request by the AC Transit bus drivers’ union to turn their beef over to an arbitrator. Drivers and mechanics are unhappy that the AC Transit Board voted June 30 to unilaterally impose new contract provisions upon workers that change work rules and require co-pays for medical insurance.

The rules are scheduled to take effect Sunday.

Attorneys for the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 192 and the transit district are scheduled to square off this morning sometime after 9 a.m before Alameda County Superior Court Judge Frank Roesch in court department  31. The location is the U.S. Post Office Building, 201 13th St. (between Alice and Jackson streets), Oakland. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Friday, July 16th, 2010
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Closing some street lanes to create a more walkable city: suburban Walnut Creek eyes change on downtown street

Walnut Creek is beginning to discuss a big-time move in the effort to make cities more pedestrian friendly: closing two of the four traffic lanes along three blocks of Mt. Diablo Boulevard in the heart of the downtown. The idea of the street narrowing is to create more space for outdoor dining and strolling.

  This  proposal in early discussions, as reported by Elisabeth Nardi  in the Contra Costa Times, is worth following.  This could affect your transportation if you live or travel in Walnut Creek. Even if you’re not a Walnut Creek regular, the story is noteworthy because it plugs into a debate about whether we need to remake American cities and life styles to be less dependent on cars. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, July 12th, 2010
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Rough times for AC Transit: Will it stir interest in transit board election this November?

AC Transit’s rough times could perk up public interest in the transit district’s board election this November. Transit board elections are usually low-key in the Bay Area, but the AC Transit board’s votes to cut bus service twice this year and impose contract conditions uililaterally on unionized bus drivers and mechanics can be expected to raise the stakes.

Board members say they are doing the best they can in a recession that has hit transit agencies hard throughout California and forced cost-cutting measures. That explanation may not stop political hopefuls from eyeing this as an opportune time to run for office and argue they could do better in addressing the bus system’s declining revenues and rising costs for workers’ health insurance and pensions.   Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Saturday, July 10th, 2010
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