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Auto transporters end 19-day strike.

A 19-day strike that had begun to cut automobile sales ended when the Teamsters union settled with the National Automobile Transporters Association, comprising 36 companies that deliver new cars to dealers. In the wake of the stoppage, the major domestic auto manufacturers offered inducements to the public to reduce their larger-than-usual inventory of vehicles at the end of the model year.

The 3-year contract provides for a limited two-tier pay system for terminal employees under which new employees will be paid 80 percent of the standard rate for their job during their first year, 90 percent during the second year, and the full rate thereafter. Under an earlier proposal the workers had rejected, the two-tier system would also have applied to drivers.

Another provision give employees the right to vote on whether their particular employers should be permitted to cut rates by 50 percent on "black-hauls"--instances in which drivers deliver a load of vehicles to a destination and are able to obtain a load of vehicles for the return. Under the prior contract, some employers had been able to obtain permission for reduced back-haul rates based on their financial condition. Under the rejected proposal, reduced rates would have applied to all back-hauls.

The accord provides for a 60-cent-an-hour wage increase in each contract year for terminal employees and for drivers during "nondriving" periods, such as when their vehicles are being loaded or unloaded. The driving rate was increased by 3.5 cents per mile in each year.

Other terms included continuation of the provision for automatic annual cost-of-living adjustments, with no diversions but payable only to the extent that the calculated amount exceeds 70 cents each year. (The employees did not receive any adjustments under the October 1984 agreement, which provided for possible adjustments in September of 1985 and 1986, each payable only to the extent that the calculated amounts exceeded 50 cents and also subject to diversions to maintain benefit levels.) The agreement also permits drivers from other terminals to haul away up to 20 percent of the loads from terminals to which they have made deliveries.
COPYRIGHT 1985 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
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Author:Ruben, George
Publication:Monthly Labor Review
Date:Oct 1, 1985
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