Bonuses part of Muni's contract proposal

Hundreds of Muni supervisors and midlevel managers will receive annual cash incentives for regular job attendance under a proposed contract with the employees’ union and the agency.

The workers, represented by Transport Workers Union Local 200, would receive a $350 annual bonus if they work at least 1,880 hours a year, or about 36 hours a week in a 52-week year. About one-third of the 270 employees would currently qualify for the payment, officials said.

Absenteeism among midlevel managers and supervisors is not a huge problem, said human resources director Diana Buchbinder, “but there still is an issue.”

The incentive program on the table is part of a proposed 74-page contract between the Municipal Transportation Agency and the union that would start July 1 and run through June 30, 2009.

In addition to the attendance program, the contract includes 11 paid holidays, five additional floating holidays and accrued vacation time that starts at two weeks for a first-year employee. Employees who use only 40 hours of sick leave during one year can turn floating holidays into cash.

The union has not approved the contract, which includes a 2 percent salary increase in April 2008 and a 3.75 percent salary increase in April 2009. Union president Glenda Lavigne said the union asked for 8 percent over the two-year period.

After the rocky opening of the T-Third metro line in early April, Muni officials have been open about attempts to solve employee-related problems within the agency.

There are about 240 vehicle operators out on long-term leave. Another 16.5 percent of drivers are absent each weekday. A Board of Supervisors Budget Analyst report from the mid-1990s showed an average of 8.6 percent unscheduled absences among street supervisors and central control dispatchers during four randomly selected pay periods.

Muni human-resource officials have estimated that one-third of the 270 employees would qualify for the financial incentive the first year, costing Muni about $60,000. Under the terms of the contract, there must be a 5 percent increase in the number of eligible employees for the program to continue.

While the union has filed an unfair labor practices lawsuit against Muni with regards to the contract, the board of directors is expected to vote on the contract in late June.

Contract offer

» 2%: Salary increase to be applied in April 2008.

» 3.75%: Salary increase to be applied in April 2009.

» 7%: Salary increase union asked forover two years.

» 350: Bonus in dollars an employee will receive each year for regular job attendance.

» 1,880: Hours an employee has to work each year to receive the attendance bonus.

» 11: Number of holidays an employee will have off each year.

» 5: Number of additional floating days employees can take off each year.

» 20: Number of job-related training hours employees are offered per year.

– Source: Municipal Transportation Agency

arocha@examiner.com

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