Sun Tran bus strike deadline extended

2014-08-06T17:00:00Z 2014-08-06T17:29:12Z Sun Tran bus strike deadline extendedDarren DaRonco Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

A bus strike has been averted, for now.

Sun Tran and union representatives have agreed to extend the existing labor contract 24 hours so union members can vote on Sun Tran's most recent offer.

The current contract was set to expire at 11:59 p.m. tonight.

Teamsters Local 104 representative Andy Marshall said six separate meetings will be held throughout the day tomorrow for union members to cast their votes.

Marshall said he couldn't discuss details of the proposed agreement prior to the vote.

Sun Tran and union representatives entered contract talks at 11 a.m. today and emerged about five hours later with a new proposal.

While no one can predict tomorrow's vote, Marshall was hopeful the two sides could avoid a strike.

"We're trying everything possible to get this resolved, but it's a good sign we got another offer to vote on," Marshall said.

Sun Tran officials also said they remained hopeful that union members would ratify the new contract.

The two sides remained far apart on negotiations entering this week.

Sun Tran’s previous proposal was rejected over the weekend by 76 percent of union members, Marshall said.

Union members could authorize a strike as early as Friday if the two sides don't reach an agreement.

The contract expired last Thursday, but the two sides agreed on a extension.

If a strike occurs, Sun Tran will still offer limited service on routes offer limited weekday service on Routes 3, 4, 6, 8, 11 and 16 from 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Streetcar and Sun Van service won't be affected by a strike.

Teamsters Local 104 represents 538 Sun Tran employees. Of those, 432 are dues-paying members.

Contact reporter Darren DaRonco at 573-4243 or Follow on twitter @DarrenDaRonco​

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