Transportation
9:32 am
Mon December 9, 2013

CATS Bus Drivers Avoid Strike, Win Pay Raise

CATS says they were very happy a strike was avoided with a tentative three-year contract deal.
CATS says they were very happy a strike was avoided with a tentative three-year contract deal.
Credit City of Charlotte

After threatening a potential strike, the union representing CATS bus drivers has reached a tentative agreement with Transit Management of Charlotte on a new three-year labor contract. Both parties have been in negotiations since July. CATS CEO Carolyn Flowers says drivers will receive a 2.3 percent pay raise, an additional day off, bonuses based on performance and attendance.

The two sides were able to find a compromise on scheduling issues and seniority. 

"CATS is very elated that McDonald Transit and the union have come to an agreement and that we'll be able to keep service moving tomorrow on a normal basis," Flowers says. "This has been a period of difficult negotiations, but we ended up with an agreement that's within our financial parameters and protects the service for the public and the investment that everyone has in transit."

As part of the agreement CATS bus service will continue as normal until the full union votes on the agreement on Thursday. About half of CATS 597 bus operators are union members. The drivers had threatened to possibly strike if an agreement was not reached by midnight tonight.