Metro Transit union committee recommends workers accept offer

If the contract passes, buses could roll as early as Sunday.

Officials came closer to a decision Thursday night whether to end the transit strike.

Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1005, which represents 2,150 union workers, has an executive board that must look over the tentative contract agreement. By the union local’s laws, a union official said the board must make a recommendation on the contract before the union can vote on it.

Frank Collins, member of the union’s education committee, said the executive board met at 9 a.m. Thursday and recommended the union accept the contract.

“This has a huge bearing on what the union decides,” Collins said.

The executive board’s decision is only a recommendation, and the union will vote regardless of their decision. They voted Thursday from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. at Northrop Auditorium and will vote today from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the union’s headquarters.

If the contract passes, it must go through the Metropolitan Council, which oversees Metro Transit. If it passes through both committees, buses could roll as early as Sunday, officials said.

Bob Gibbons, Metro Transit spokesman, said buses are prepared to run as soon as possible.

Neither Met Council nor the union will go into specific detail about the contract until votes are tallied.

Peter Bell, Met Council chairman, said Wednesday he is confident the union will accept the new offer.

– Britt Johnsen