OAKLAND (KCBS) — AC Transit bus drivers and other workers were set to vote on a tentative contract this week, after management and union negotiators hammered out a last minute deal just as a 60-day cooling off period was set to expire.

That union’s members voted down two previous deals in part due to proposed health care costs.

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While management favored a one-time hike, union members didn’t want any at all.

Amalgamated Transit Union Local 192 President Yvonne Williams said that in the current deal, health-care cost increases will be phased in over the life of the contract.

“It’s something that the members can plan. They can plans for the next two and half years and know that there’s not going to be an escalating cost in their health care coverage,” she said.

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Williams said she was confident the deal would pass.

“There’s always going to be some who are not be happy for one reason or another and with respect to them, we still think this is a good agreement,” Williams said.

ATU 192 negotiator Nathaniel Arnold, who said the both sides worked nonstop with a mediator since October and agrees with Williams calling the contract “fair and equitable.”

“Especially in considering these economic times,” he said.

Representatives for AC Transit were unavailable for comment.

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