With the new collective agreement, ATU Local 113 is asking the new Toronto City Council and TTC to join us in addressing the provincial government`s threat to split the TTC by taking its subway and putting it on the overtaking path to privatization, fare increases and reduced passenger service. The dispute over a new contract ended this month with interest rate arbitration, after the union and TTC were unable to reach an agreement through collective bargaining and mediation. On several key issues, Arbitrator William Kaplan`s October 23 decision sided with Amalgamated Transit Union Local 113, which represents approximately 11,000 transit operators including VAT, ticket collectors and maintenance workers. The award ends a seven-month standoff between the two parties – the previous collective agreement expired on March 31. “Toronto`s hard-working transit workers welcome the new collective agreement that recognizes our important role in the communities we serve with fair wages and benefits. From the beginning of the process, ATU Local 113 came to the table in good faith to negotiate a deal and, despite the TTC`s efforts to reduce, reduce and suspend the talks, the arbitrator agreed that the contract follows years of negotiated solutions and is not based on drastic and unfair concessions. The arbitrator also rejected the TTC`s assertion that City of Toronto workers were an appropriate comparison with our 11,000 qualified people in transit and accepted that comparisons with Metrolinx, Mississauga MiWay and Brampton Transit were more appropriate. “Hard-working workers on Toronto`s public transit are pleased with the new collective agreement that recognizes our important role in the communities we serve with fair wages and social benefits,” Frank Grimaldi, president of Local 113, said in a statement. . . .