Eastern-U.S. railroad CSX Transportation reached a tentative contract with the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen that raises pay 16 percent over 5 years and increases performance bonuses tied to company finances.
The union said it mailed ballots to more than 5,000 CSX train engineers Aug. 5 and will start counting them Sept. 10.
The wage increases, which the union said compound to about 17 percent, begin Jan. 1, 2010. Wolfe Research analyst Edward Wolfe said that amount, about 3 percent a year, is very similar to what unions got in the 2007-2008 round of national contract talks.
Both CSX and Norfolk Southern, Wolfe said, negotiate deals with the BLET separate from the national talks to start this fall. The BLET is the second-largest rail labor group, behind only the conductors’ United Transportation Union in membership.
The CSX-BLET deal bumps up the maximum annual performance bonus to 12 percent of total wages from 10 percent now, the union said, regardless of a worker’s length of service.
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