Saturday, March 26, 2011

Transit Service Cuts: March 27 is Tomorrow

Update: March 28 2011 - Negotiations failed. First weekday in Pittsburgh after the 15% service cuts…

In a final attempt to prevent the March 27th service cut and the layoff of about 180 Port Authority employees, local ATU-85 put an unexpected offer on the table: a $18.6 million concession resulting from employees accepting a 10 percent pay cut as well as a one year salary freeze. Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato countered with two proposals of his own

“Mr. Onorato's proposals use the mixture of union concessions and new revenue to boost the authority's financial position by about $30 million a year”
Read more: Pittsburgh Post Gazette A final decision is expected today at 3pm when the Port Authority Board will meet again to evaluate all proposals. Where are we, the riders, in these negotiations? Stu Strickland draws an illustrative parallel between riders and the balls used in a football game on his blog:

“In public transit, riders are the ball. Nobody cares about the riders, really. We're kicked and pushed around just like the football. How different a football game would be if, instead of a leather ball, it was played with a pot of soup. Carry that soup pot and jump on it all you want, but don't spill the soup! "

"However, there are really three sides to a football game: Officials! Officials, in this case our elected representatives, really decide what happens. They don't so much spill the soup as spoil the soup. "No you can't add ingredients." "Yes, you must add paprika and I don't care if you hate paprika." Right now they're saying, "No, you can't plug in the burner under the pot."

And we as riders do agree with his final statement : "Enough already! We riders want our soup. We do not want it spilled. We do not want it spoiled. Figure it out! Don't spill our soup!”

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