SEPTA, Transit Union Report Progress

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Will a deal be struck between SEPTA and its transit workers before the union contract expires Sunday? NBC10's Deanna Durante reports the two sides have agreed to work on a two-year deal in hopes of avoiding a strike.

    Negotiators for Philadelphia's transit system and the union representing thousands of workers resume Friday amid reports of progress.

    Officials from the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority and Transport Workers Union Local 234 met informally Thursday night. Both sides said a possible two-year contract is being discussed.

    Union president Willie Brown called it the most productive meeting since talks began, and said negotiators are “close.” He said “there's no reason why we can't get this thing done.”

    A SEPTA spokeswoman says talks resume at 11 a.m. Friday at an undisclosed location.

    SEPTA & Union Meet Again With Strike Looming

    [PHI] SEPTA & Union Meet Again With Strike Looming
    With a contract ending on Sunday at midnight, SEPTA and its workers union are scheduled to meet again on Friday to discuss a new deal. A SEPTA strike would affect thousands of commuters daily.

    The contract for most members of TWU Local 234, which represents around 5,000 SEPTA workers, expired on March 15. Union members have been working under an old agreement since then.

    The last of three TWU and SEPTA contracts is set to expire at midnight on April 6. Local lawmakers have asked both sides to enter arbitration, which is normally used in the state to settle contracts with police, fire and other employees, in order to avoid a strike.

    SEPTA, the nation's sixth-largest transit operator, has annual ridership of about 337 million. A 2009 transit workers' strike lasted six days.

    If a strike happens, Union leaders say SEPTA's backup plans won't be enough.

    SEPTA Strike on the Horizon?

    [PHI] SEPTA Strike on the Horizon?
    The president of SEPTA's largest union says the chances of a strike are likely. NBC10's George Spencer has the latest.

    "There plan is to put people on regional rail," Brown said. "You can only carry so many people."