MTD Union Leaders to Pow-Wow With Labor Department

Union leaders representing city bus drivers and the management of Metropolitan Transit District (MTD) have agreed to work together to lobby the Department of Labor to release $2.3 million in federal funds that have been frozen because of a labor-management dispute at MTD. Thus far, no date has been set for the conference call, but without the funds serious service cuts are imminent. The money was frozen after Teamsters Local 186, which represents MTD drivers, objected to its release last month, citing new contract language requiring newly hired drivers pay an unspecified — but possibly quite large — portion of their retirement out of pocket. The Teamsters have opposed this requirement, arguing such contract changes should be negotiated at the bargaining table. MTD officials have insisted the new language is required by California’s Pension Reform Act, passed by the State Legislature last year. Next week, the MTD board will hear a report detailing what services would have to be cut and by how much should the dispute not be resolved.

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

event calendar sponsored by:

Lavagnino’s Sudden Victory

5th District supervisor a shoo-in as filing window closes; Gregg Hart also unopposed for 2nd District.

One Half of Old Town Streets to Get Sidewalks

Walkways planned for one side of Goleta neighborhood streets; parking, lighting talks at community meeting March 22.

After Disaster in Montecito, Where Is All the Money Going?

Santa Barbara nonprofits account for millions spent on relief efforts.

Santa Barbara Experiences a Rainy March, but a Dry Year

Water year only 34 percent of normal for precipitation.

City Says Franceschi House Has Got to Go

The estimate to rehabilitate the historical building was nearly $7 million.