BART officials ask governor for help

The Associated Press
Saturday June 30, 2001

OAKLAND — Unions representing BART employees have asked Gov. Gray Davis to help avert a strike on the commuter train network. 

BART’s three largest unions, representing 2,800 employees, have voted to authorize a strike beginning midnight Saturday. 

But they also have asked Davis to impose a 60-day cooling off period that would allow negotiations to continue. 

“Should the governor grant our request, BART riders can be assured there will be no strike on Sunday morning,” said Larry Hendel with the Service Employees International Union 790, which represents maintenance and clerical workers. 

A Davis spokesman said Friday evening the governor has not yet decided how to respond to the requested intervention. 

BART managers have opposed the cooling-off period, saying they to reach an agreement this weekend. 

“They have to get serious at the bargaining table,” BART General Manager Tom Margro said of his union counterparts. 

A strike would affect 335,000 commuters in the San Francisco Bay area.