Jesse Jackson To Meet With Transportation Sec LaHood Over Chicago Transit
CHICAGO - In an effort to seek restoration of February's
Chicago Transit Authority service cuts and job losses, Darrell Jefferson,
president of ATU Local 241 is scheduled to meet with U.S. Secretary of
Transportation Ray LaHood Wednesday at the Capitol Building.
Jefferson, in Washington, D.C. for the Amalgamated Transit Union
Legislative Conference, will point to HR 2746 (sponsored by Rep. Russ
Carnahan), as part of the remedy for Chicago's transit woes. The bill
proposes allowing local transit agencies to use anywhere from 30 percent
to 50 percent of the transit funding they receive from the federal
government to operate public transportation systems.
In reinforcing his commitment to finding a permanent funding solution for
mass transit, Jefferson noted, "We need our union brothers and sisters to
get their jobs back. They do vital work for mass transit in Chicago. It is
imperative that a funding solution for mass transit is put in place to
eliminate 'CTA doomsday scenarios' once and for all."
Jefferson also will meet with members of Illinois' congressional delegation
Tuesday, where he will outline the facts of the local's most recent
concessions and bailouts, including relieving CTA of $1.3 billion in
retiree health-care and bond obligations two years ago. In addition, he
willunderscore how, CTA workers surrendered their 3 percent wage increase
for 2007 and 2008, and also another 2.3 percent in scheduled pay increases
this year that went directly to the pension fund to help bailout the CTA
from its current financial crisis.
ATU Local 241 filed a series of lawsuits against the CTA in February,
ranging from a class-action grievance aimed at CTA employee relations, a
federal suit for violating the Fair Labor Standards Act, and a state
lawsuit filed in Cook County to enforce 10 contract agreements.
ATU Local 241 is the voice of working people employed in the transportation
industry. It is the largest local within the ATU in the United States with
nearly 11,000 members.
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Contact: A.C. McLean
First Trace Communications
Mobile: (312) 927-3679