TAS services back on track after pay dispute ends

Metro Tasmania can focused service delivery, with a drawn-out pay dispute now over

April 26, 2013

Metro Tasmania bus drivers recently voted in favour of a new three-year pay offer, bringing to an end a drawn-out pay dispute.

At a recent meeting, more than 50 percent of Metro's workers approved the new in-principle agreement between the bus union and Metro Tasmania.

The vote signalled the end of a
bitter industrial
dispute that disrupted services for more than seven weeks, and included several strikes and an employee lockout.

A Metro Tasmania spokesperson says the vote means Metro can now concentrate on delivering services.

"It (the vote) wasn’t unanimous but it means that the dispute is basically resolved," the spokesperson says.

Metro’s board was first to approve the Enterprise Agreement before drivers had the final say late last week.

Under the proposed agreement, the wage structure for bus drivers will be compressed, meaning that it will take a driver three years and the attainment of Certificate 3 in Transport and Logistics to reach the top level (Level 5).

Wages for drivers who have worked for Metro for less than nine years will receive a two percent increase per year for the next three years.

Wages for drivers with more than nine years’ experience will receive a 2.5 percent increase per year and will be moved into a new level, known as 5E. No other drivers will have access to this level, according to Metro.

The increase for the third year will be in line with CPI for Hobart if it has exceeded two percent for the 12 months ending December 31, 2014.

The Rail Bus and Tram Union (RBTU)
had been pushing for a three percent wage rise per year over three years.

As part of the new agreement, Metro also plans to open up satellite yards in Hobart for longer and on weekends, and limit the number of shifts that are five hours 30 minutes with two 15 minute paid breaks.

The RTBU has also agreed to actively participate in the project to improve the culture at Metro.

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