ERMA lifetime maximum benefit to increase in 2023

The lifetime maximum benefit for the Railroad Employees National Early Retirement Major Medical Benefit (ERMA or GA-46000) Plan will increase from $182,700 to $188,000 beginning Jan. 1, 2023. At the end of 2001, labor and management had agreed on various procedures to administer the annual changes in the amount of the lifetime maximum benefit under […]

RRB: Credit for military service under the Railroad Retirement Act

Many railroad employees have served in the Armed Forces of the United States. Under certain conditions, their military service may be creditable as railroad service under the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA). The following questions and answers provide information on how military service may be credited toward Railroad Retirement benefits. 1. Under what conditions can military service […]

2022 Tentative Agreement ratification results and next steps

Dear Brothers and Sisters: As you are undoubtedly aware, voting on the 2022 Tentative Agreement concluded yesterday evening at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time. I would like to sincerely thank each and every member who exercised their right to participate in this ratification, regardless of how you voted. While the final outcome is somewhat disheartening, I […]

Split decision: Unions for engineers and conductors take different routes in freight rail contract ratification vote

BLET members vote to ratify national rail agreement with the nation’s Class I railroads; operating craft (Train & Engine service) members of SMART-TD have voted to reject it, while TD yardmasters have voted to ratify their national agreement. INDEPENDENCE, Ohio — Voting concluded midnight Sunday for members of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen […]

SMART-TD, BLET town hall yields facts about tentative agreement

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio, November 11 — At a November 9 Town Hall meeting, SMART Transportation Division President Jeremy Ferguson and Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen President Dennis Pierce discussed the tentative National Rail Agreement with dozens of members from both unions. A video recording of the Town Hall (approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes) is […]

A message to veterans from President Ferguson

Today and every day, I always take a moment to acknowledge and thank our SMART Transportation Division members who are fellow veterans of the United States military. Our veterans are a source of pride to our organization for what they have contributed and sacrificed for the good of our union as well as our country. […]

Important update for all SMART-TD and BLET members included in national negotiations

2023 payment rates confirmed for H&W plans INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (Nov. 8, 2022) — Late last week, members of the Cooperating Railway Labor Organizations (CRLO) and the National Carriers’ Conference Committee (NCCC) convened to review and renew the payment rates for the nationally negotiated health & welfare plans including medical, dental, vision, and life/accidental death & […]

BLET, SMART-TD to host Town Hall meeting on November 9

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio, (Nov. 3, 2022) — The BLET and SMART-TD will host a joint town hall meeting next week to discuss the tentative national rail agreement. Members of both unions from all involved railroads are welcome to attend. Details are as follows: Time: 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 9 Location: BLET National Division Headquarters, 7061 E. […]

VP Harris visits SM Local 17, highlights partnership with SMART and steps to lower energy costs

Vice President Kamala Harris visited the SMART Local 17 union hall in Boston on Wednesday, November 2, emphasizing the work SMART members will perform as part of the Biden administration’s push to lower energy costs. Harris announced a variety of steps the administration will take – part of the Inflation Reduction Act – to help […]