Influential Legislators Back TWU Contract Fight

March 28, 2012
By Ray Parker, Staff Writer

Some of Albany's heavy hitters (apart from the three men in the back room) stepped on stage at Albany's Hart Theatre to endorse TWU Local 100's demand that their next contract not mirror the concessions agreed to by upstate unions.

A G Grows in Brooklyn

March 13, 2012
By Ray Parker, Staff Writer

An online petition generated by the labor-friendly Working Families Party is gaining some traction in the effort to persuade the often tin-eared MTA to continue a service enhancement to the G Train in Brooklyn. This past Saturday the WFP put out an e-blast saying that 2,000 Brooklyn residents signed the petition, and that the MTA was reconsidering its earlier decision to end the enhancement.

“MTA Can Pay!”

February 29, 2012
By Ray Parker, Staff Reporter

Fifty demonstrators from Local 100 and Occupy Wall Street packed the MTA’s public seating to capacity at the Authority’s monthly board meeting on February 29th. A dozen speakers brought Board Members’ attention to the fact that the MTA is choosing not to tap a reserve fund known as GASB-45, which has $490 million in surplus funds. Making the case that revenue exists to restore service and the fund the contract is now TWU Local 100’s central focus as negotiations move past the 45-day mark.

Transient Taxes for Transit

February 29, 2012
By Marc Bussanich, LaborPress City Reporter

The Hudson River Valley business community’s chorus opposed to the MTA Payroll Tax rang all the way down to the southern tip of Manhattan. Governor Andrew Cuomo caved in to the refrains, which will subtract $250 million in dedicated funding to the MTA. But more tax exemptions may be forthcoming, as the Freelancers Union notified its members it’ll be working hard this spring to end the tax on freelancers.

A Freelancers Union spokesperson said two separate bills are waiting for legislative action in Albany. Senators Andrew Lanza and Daniel Squadron introduced Senate Bill 6330 and Assembly Members Michael Cusick and Brian Kavanagh introduced Assembly Bill A9314A, which would exempt freelancers from paying the MTA Payroll Tax earning $50,000 or more annually.

NICE Bus to Implement Service Changes

February 28, 2012
By Marc Bussanich, LaborPress City Reporter
LaborPress reported in early January the new labor contract TWU Local 252 reached with the new private bus operator, Veolia Transportation Services, after the MTA and Nassau County couldn’t reach a new financial agreement to support public bus transit. We also reported, citing a report by Long Island Jobs with Justice, the potential for bus service cuts in Nassau based on the private company’s record in other cities.

Republicans line up for the MTA

Legislators Martin Golden and Nicole Malliotakis, and union leaders Angelo Tanzi (in foreground, ATU Local 726) and John Samuelsen (TWU Local 100) at the MTA Coalition briefing in Albany on Valentine’s DayFebruary 16, 2012
By Neal Tepel

State Senator Martin J. Golden (R,C,I –Brooklyn) and Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R,C-Brooklyn, Staten Island) had a convivial session with a dozen unions representing the workforce of the MTA – including New York City Transit, Metro North, various commuter lines, and Bridge and Tunnel operators. Meeting at the AFL-CIO building on South Swan Street in Albany Tuesday, February 14th, the legislators trumpeted a new bill they introduced ending fees the MTA now pays to the State Division of Budget for borrowing money for private investors.

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