Unions & Ohio Turnpike reported to have agreed to 3-year pay rates "freeze"
By Peter Samuel
The Toledo Blade newspaper has reported that the Ohio Turnpike Commission and their major labor union have agreed to a new three-year contract that provides for a "freeze" in pay and conditions. George Distel, executive director is quoted as calling the labor contract "basically a wage freeze for three years" and "a good deal for both us and the rank and file."
Previous labor contracts have provided for annual increases in pay scales.
The first year base rate for toll collectors will continue to be $19.50/hour. The "freeze" does not change the hike in pay rates in place for service - an increase in hourly pay of about an dollar an hour each year for five years.
After five years a toll collector gets $24.41, so there is a built in annual increase over that time of around 4.4%/year.
The labor contract was negotiated by Teamsters Local 436 and supported by union members voting in large majorities to endorse it.
Ohio was the last of the major toll authorities in America to implement electronic tolling and has been giving incentive payments to toll collectors to leave voluntarily. Fulltimers have been entitled to $35k in lump-sum retirement payments, and part-timers to golden handshakes ranging between $5k and $15k.
The Turnpike website has been down all day and we weren't able to see if there is an announcement of the labor contract or to get through to anyone there, it being Sunday.