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BLET Advisory Board Resolution on Tentative National Freight Agreement


1. The Advisory Board unanimously supports the decision made by the National Wage Committee to send the Tentative Agreement to the membership for their consideration.
2. The Advisory Board further recognizes that our Bylaws require that the membership be given the right to vote on the contract, and fully respects their right to vote in favor of or against the Tentative Agreement. Should the Tentative Agreement fail ratification, every member of the Advisory Board will be on the picket line with the membership when the cooling-off period ends.

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BLET, SMART-TD joint statement on Labor Day 2022

As we approach Labor Day 2022, our Unions stand at a crossroads. While our normal messages heading into one of the most important days for Organized Labor would be about Labor’s proud history of improving the lives of working-class Americans, we are embroiled in the ongoing effort to obtain a National Freight Agreement worthy of our members’ consideration.

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Update on PEB 250 recommendations to national agreement negotiations

On Monday, August 22, the SMART TD and BLET, along with the other remaining United Rail Unions, met with the Rail Carriers via Zoom to determine if PEB 250’s recommendations could serve as a basis for a tentative agreement. In-person meetings were then held on Thursday and Friday in Chicago, Illinois. Unfortunately, the meetings did not result in any tentative agreement language that operating crafts would accept, or that could be presented to our members for ratification.

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BLET, SMART-TD presidents update members following PEB 250

Presidential Emergency Board (“PEB” or “the Board”) 250 conducted hearings in Washington, D.C. this past week, concluding on July 28th. We both were honored to represent our unions and, by extension, the memberships of the dozen strong United Rail Unions as we presented and testified in support of our unified case to the PEB. We are sharing this joint message to ensure that our members are up to date on all of the bargaining round issues.

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Membership update from the United Rail Unions regarding PEB No. 250

Today, July 24, 2022, the United Rail Unions, who are bargaining as part of the Coordinated Bargaining Coalition and the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way/SMART Mechanical Coalition, and the Carriers represented by the National Carriers Conference Committee (NCCC) began their presentations before the Presidential Emergency Board (PEB) appointed by President Biden.

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Daily Headlines

BNSF says it can’t be sued by Amtrak crash victims

BNSF Railway has asked a federal court to rule that those who have sued over the June derailment of Amtrak’s Southwest Chief must settle matters through arbitration rather than lawsuits, and asked that state suits be placed on hold while the arbitration question is decided at the federal level.

Chicago’s CREATE lands $70 million federal grant for Westside project

Chicago’s CREATE Program will receive $70 million in federal funding for a $170 million project to modernize a 2-mile stretch of Union Pacific track on the city’s west side, the partners in the Chicago Region Environment and Transportation Efficiency Program have announced.