Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesBART passengers walk off of a train on Oct. 15

Votes on BART labor agreement not expected until new year

Votes on an agreement that would end eight months of strife between BART and its labor unions probably won't be held until late next week, a transit agency spokesman said Monday.

BART and its two biggest unions reached a tentative agreement early Saturday morning but the transit agency's board of directors most likely won't vote on it until Jan. 2 at the earliest, BART spokesman Jim

Allison said.

He said BART Board President Joel Keller wants the board to have a special meeting on Jan. 2 to allow for the vote but a firm date probably won't be set until after Christmas. The board's next regular meeting is Jan. 9.

The tentative agreement resolves a dispute over a paid family medical leave provision that management said had been inserted in a previous tentative agreement by mistake, but leaders of the two unions said it was

intended by all parties to be part of the pact.

Members of Service Employees International Union Local 1021 and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555 won't vote until after the BART board votes,

Allison said.

The new agreement doesn't include paid family medical leave but does expand paid time off for bereavement leave to include deaths of family members.

The tentative pact also calls for the construction of break rooms in the Daly City, Millbrae and West Oakland stations and allows qualifying employees more flexibility in how they pay for the costs of their family medical leave, plus additional administrative changes to the contract.

BART General Manager Grace Crunican said in a statement, “After eight months of uncertainty for our riders, this deal will guarantee that every ounce of the agency's focus will be directed to providing great service

to the Bay Area during the peak holiday period and beyond.”

Union leaders couldn't be reached for comment Monday.

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