BART Unions And Management To Resume Contract Negotiations This Afternoon

2:39 PM: BART management will be meeting with union leaders this afternoon to resume contract negotiations, a BART spokesman said.

A federal mediator who has been working with management and the two striking unions throughout the labor dispute will be at the meeting.

See all Appeal coverage Of BART’s second strike of 2013 here

“We’re going to try to reach an agreement,” BART spokesman Rick Rice said.

If an agreement is reached by 6 p.m. today, Rice said trains will be running again Tuesday morning.

Service Employees International Union Local 1021 and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555 representatives will meet face to face with management as talks resume, he said.

Rice said he did not yet know where or when the meeting will take place.

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1:13 PM: A special closed-session BART board meeting that had been scheduled for 3 p.m. today has been canceled.

The cancellation came after BART’s two striking unions submitted a new contract proposal to BART management on Sunday that the unions said offered flexibility on some of the work rules that have become sticking points.

See all Appeal coverage Of BART’s second strike of 2013 here

BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost said the meeting was postponed because there is no need yet to give the board an update on the labor dispute.

A regularly scheduled board meeting will be held on Thursday.

Trost said BART management was meeting with a mediator until late Sunday night and that meetings will continue today.

She said she would not provide details about what those talks look like or whether they involve union representatives.

Service Employees International Union Local 1021 spokeswoman Cecille Isidro said union leaders are planning to meet today to discuss the contract dispute. She said there are no sit-down meetings scheduled with BART management.

Oakland Mayor Jean Quan tweeted this morning that the outlook appears “hopeful” that BART talks will resume.

Union officials posted on Facebook Sunday night about the new contract offer from SEIU Local 1021 and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555, saying the proposal is “aimed at ending the strike and getting the parties back into mediation to finish bargaining a contract.”

According to the unions, the new proposal makes concessions related to work rules governing the use of technology but “insisted on retaining work rules” that protect safety.

Sasha Lekach, Bay City News

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