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TTC Strike Likely Monday at 4 a.m.

Bob Kinnear’s statement to the press at the 2:30 p.m. conference was somewhat more conciliatory than two days ago. In his speech, he suggested that a part of the reason both sides were now at the table was the provincial government’s inadequate funding of the system.

Despite this, he announced that union and management were too far apart and that his union would be withdrawing its services at 4 a.m. on Monday. The union has noted progress on wages but not on pensions, work scheduling and other non-monetary issues. They also raised the issue of contracting out, which brought surprise from Howard Moscoe (responding later) who said there were no plans to contract out maintenance work.

Muddying the waters was the sudden emergence yesterday of a $65 million transitway project that wasn’t in the TTC’s budget or its Ridership Growth Strategy. That and the $500,000 unbudgeted environmental assessment funding to come this year has led union officials to accuse the City of deceit when they say the cupboard is bare.

The TTC has the weekend to try and reopen negotiations to avert a strike, and the mayor is invited to intervene. Kinnear’s final statement at the conference was “anything is possible.”

Howard Moscoe’s Response

TTC Chairman Howard Moscoe expressed surprise and disappointment over the Union’s statement and has offered to meet with the Union throughout the weekend to address their remaining concerns.

Details of the TTC’s last offer are as follows:

           1st year  2nd year  3rd year   4th year
Wages:       2.75%     3.00%    3.25%     to be negotiated
Beneftis:    0.22%     0.41%    0.52%      1.4%
Pensions:    0.50%     0.50%    1.00%

The City has not yet contacted the McGuinty government regarding back-to-work legislation.

David Miller Pushes for More Negotiations

Mayor David Miller held a press conference at 3:50 p.m. and expressed hope that the people would get back to the table with good will and negotiate. Although he reserved the right to get involved, he notes that he is not the designated negotiator for the City (Moscoe is) and he wants the assigned parties to do their work. Failing that, he said he would be meeting with Premier McGuinty this weekend to discuss “all options”.

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