Newsom has harsh words for operators union in latest YouTube address 

Gavin Newsom had harsh words for Muni’s transit operators union during his latest You Tube address on Friday.

Newsom, who releases a video of talking points on You Tube every week, called out the Transit Operators Union Local 250-A, the union representing Muni’s 2,200 transit operators, for not doing their part to help balance the transit agency’s budget.

In the past three years, the Municipal Transportation Agency, which operates Muni, has had $220 million taken from it by the state, a funding situation that Newsom chiefly attributed to the agency’s budget problems (it recently dealt with a $56.4 million deficit for the upcoming fiscal year by implementing a 10 percent service reduction).

However, the mayor said the financial difficulties of the MTA have been heightened by TWU’s unwillingness to accept labor concessions. Under work rules written in The City’s charter, TWU’s members are set to receive $9 million in pay raises on July 1.

“The challenge has been made worse by the incomprehensible desire by our transit workers to take a wage increase of roughly 5.5 percent, and not fulfill a commitment they made through a tentative agreement with my office to contribute back to the agency some $14 million,” said Newsom. “If TWU simply wouldn’t take their wage increase, and accept their current level of pay, it would substantially reduce the need for service cuts. Other organizations, like SEIU, have stepped up, and they’re keeping vital city services from being closed, and TWU needs to do the same thing.”

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Will Reisman

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