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California Briefing / San Francisco

BART workers to go on strike

August 14, 2009|Julie E. Strack

A union representing workers on the Bay Area's rail system said Thursday it will strike after service ends Sunday, potentially stranding about 340,000 commuters Monday morning.

Contract negotiations between management of the Bay Area Rapid Transit system and union officials broke down Wednesday after four months of talks when the union rejected the transit agency's final contract proposal. The agency's board voted to impose the contract Thursday, leading the union, which represents about 900 train operators and station agents, to announce a strike.

Jesse Hunt, the union's president, said the contract would cut pay by 7%. BART's other unions recently voted to approve similar contracts, said Lynette Sweet, a board member. The transit system faces a projected $310-million deficit over the next four years, and the agency increased fares and cut service July 1.

-- Julie E. Strack

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