Bus operators of SMART Local 1715 in Charlotte, N.C., on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2023, ratified a new collective bargaining agreement with a vote margin of 20 to 1.
The new contract for the operators for the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) calls for a significant wage increase, double-time for holidays and the additional holiday of Juneteenth. It also provides for night differential pay and an increase in the pension cap. There are also changes to the bidding of work process that favor operators who may be unable to bid when the process starts. All wage increases are retroactive to July 1, 2022.
“I would like to thank the negotiations committee consisting of General Chairperson Joseph Paglia, Vice General Chairperson and Local President Christy Kiser, Local Chairperson Stanley Valentine, Secretary & Treasurer Chris Johnson and Local Committee of Adjustment Secretary Sabrina White for their hard work and tireless effort to deliver a package that the members would accept,” SMART Transportation Division Bus Department Vice President Calvin Studivant said. “The negotiations took more than nine months to complete, but the committee stayed focused on the task at hand and they delivered.”