SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The on-again, off-again talks to end a labor dispute between operators and officials with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency are once again off.

That has led Ed Reiskin, SFMTA Director of Transportation, to pen a lengthy letter to Transport Workers Union, Local 250-A, including some tough talk and warnings. Reiskin expressed disappointment that the union does not want to continue the arbitration process that began again this week.

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Kristen Holland, spokesperson for the Municipal Transportation Agency, said Reiskin wants the two sides back at the table by June 24.

“Now we’re really at a place of just urging the union’s leadership to return to charter mandated mediation and arbitration process,” she said.

Operators staged a three-day sickout last week, causing major problems for those who rely on Muni service to get around San Francisco. The union’s main concern is that the contract proposal would require them to pay into their pension fund, something other city workers already do.

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This week, TWU leaders, who insisted they did not orchestrate the sickout, returned to the table, only to walk away again.

“We know that they have a difficult job to do, that they do it well, and deserve a compensation package that values their work, and that’s what we want to get to,” Holland said.

In his letter, Reiskin said Muni operators risk losing a raise and also forfeiting other work rules, including arbitration of grievances.

Union officials have not returned calls to KCBS for comment.

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