SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) – The two largest unions representing over 2,300 Bay Area Rapid Transit workers gave BART management a 72-hour strike notice on Thursday night, signaling their intent to walk off the job on July 1 if a new contract agreement is not reached.
BART spokesman Rick Rice said despite the unions giving notice, he believed both sides remained committed to trying to avoid a strike that would cripple the Bay Area commute on Monday morning.
Another contract bargaining session with a state mediator was scheduled for Friday at 11 a.m.; the existing contract expires Sunday night.
The strike notice was delivered after BART earlier Thursday said it had put forward a new contract offer that was closer to what the unions were seeking on benefits, pensions and salaries. The unions disagreed, saying in a statement that BART’s latest offer was similar to its’ initial proposal.
(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)