Tentative deal reached in Moncton transit dispute
Published Wednesday, November 28, 2012 1:22PM AST
Last Updated Wednesday, November 28, 2012 6:34PM AST
There is relief in Moncton today as transit users learn the city’s Codiac Transpo lockout could soon be over.
The city of Moncton has reached a tentative agreement with the Amalgamated Transit Union 1290, five months after it locked out Codiac Transpo workers.
Both sides still need to ratify the deal, which was hammered out by bargaining teams over the past few days.
Neither side will discuss the details of the agreement until it is ratified, but transit users say they hope it is a good deal for the city.
“I don't think it's worth having a bus system if the bus drivers are going to make as much money as they do,” says transit user David Little.
Stephanie Godin works at the French Immigration Centre in Moncton. She says the lack of municipal transportation has been hard on families moving to the city.
“You need transportation to find a job, for the family, to have a good life. To integrate into the community you need to be able to get places, so it was difficult for our clients,” says Godin.
Union representatives say the offer will be voted on by about 75 bus drivers and other employees Friday.
“I don't think it's ever a formality, I don't take anything for granted,” says Mayor George LeBlanc. “I'm feeling very optimistic we're going to get it done on Friday.”
If the new deal is ratified, LeBlanc says buses will have to undergo a safety inspection before they will be back on the streets, which may take a couple of weeks.
Moncton locked out roughly 90 bus drivers, mechanics and other workers at Codiac Transpo on June 26 after they threatened to strike
With files from CTV Atlantic's Jonathan MacInnis