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Metro Transit
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King Boreas
Geocacher


Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2442

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:01 pm    Post subject: Metro Transit Reply with quote

ATU Local 1005 is on strike, and the buses have been idle for 3 weeks. Has this affected YOU at all, or anyone you know?

There are a LOT of politics involved here, and I'm not interested in getting into that. Please be honest with your thoughts. I'd sincerely like to know what y'all think about it.
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't mean to offend, but my bus is still running. Non-metro transit and privately owned or something. It's actually made my commute shorter as the bus can move a lot faster without the metro transit busses in front of it.
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King Boreas
Geocacher


Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2442

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, it's affected me. I'm not a driver or a mechanic, but I'm a Local 1005 member. In fact, my position is the lowest paid union job at Metro Transit (thanks to our last contract.) I have worked there 32+ years.

Yesterday was my first missed payday. (We get paid every two weeks.) With overtime, my average check is $1250.00 net. Since I've been off work, I received $50.00 strike pay the first week, and $150.00 strike pay the second week. The United Way Labor Assistance has given me two $25.00 certificates for CUB Foods. The Postal Union dedicated their food drive to Local 1005. I have been to that food shelf twice, and chose canned soup, canned vegetables, canned fruit, pasta, and bread: maybe $100.00 worth of food. That's a total of $350.00, so I'm $900.00 short for two weeks.

I guess yesterday was a last hurrah for awhile. I used $20.00 gas to place 7 new caches (Zimmerman/Princeton area) and find one of mine that hasn't been logged since last October. I'm definitely going to miss the travels. Last week I *found* a very cool park in Good Thunder and yesterday I *found* one in Sherburne County.
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Marsha and Silent Bob
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 02 Sep 2003

Posts: 6261

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't read the part about the politics of it... I have edited my post accordingly.

No, it hasn't affected anything that I do in my day to day routine. I have found that the bus route that Marsha used this year for U of MN is still running.

We apparently would have had no problems with it.

Silent Bob
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Sad state of affairs.


Last edited by Marsha and Silent Bob on Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:51 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Lyverbird
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Oct 2003

Posts: 443

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm rural so I have to say that it has not affected me one bit. England was and still is very unionized. I can remember the troubles and fights that strikes and scabs, as pick line crosses were called, could bring about. I always found myself agreeing with both sides.
Myself I have never been a member of one. So maybe I shouldn't coment. But I would have to agree that it seems silly to loose $900 for $500 a year. Watching the news in the morning, there hasn't been much in the way of traffic problems.
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King Boreas
Geocacher


Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2442

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's not about wages, it's about health insurance. And it's progressive. Give up something here, and it'll be more and more next time. I have links, and discussion on another forum, but unfortunately it's down for a couple days.
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s4xton
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 23 Mar 2003

Posts: 1070

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I currently only use the bus between the airport and back, and I haven't been to the airport since December. My work commute is from downtown St. Paul to Oakdale, so I'm opposite the flow of traffic generally - and the bus routes to get me from here to there didn't seem worth it. That, and I tend to be flexable at work with my hours.

I have friends that use the bus system but have found co-workers and friends to carpool with... or have a car they generally only using on weekends or for off-work activities.

Certianly does not represent the majority of bus users, though. I really feel for them, and for their employers - as they're both strained by this situation.

-Aaron
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Marsha and Silent Bob
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 02 Sep 2003

Posts: 6261

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kingboreas wrote:
It's not about wages, it's about health insurance. And it's progressive. Give up something here, and it'll be more and more next time. I have links, and discussion on another forum, but unfortunately it's down for a couple days.

Again, give up $500/year or $500 in a week. I would need to be able to pay rent still.
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KC0GRN
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 22 Feb 2004

Posts: 1424

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To be honest, I'm pretty oblivious to most union things, having never been in one.

I can't say as I've used the busses that much either, only because I have my own transportation and never had the need. My roommate has because he's considered legally blind (though he sees fine, just not good enough to pass the eye exam), but usually he gets rides from me or my other roommate, and is currently working general contract stuff. So I haven't been affected too much in one way or another by the strike. Might notice it more if it lasts longer and has an effect on the economy..
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PeakShift
Geocacher


Joined: 15 Aug 2003

Posts: 28

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 4:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
t's not about wages, it's about health insurance.


The AFSCME local 3800 strike (U of MN) should be a good indicator of where this is heading- That strike was for similar reasons - Pay, and insurance benefits. The want for gravy is insatiable.....
Working in HR, I also understand what the fringe cost of an employee is.

As a former member of AFSCME LOCAL 3800, still a member of AFSCME(differnt local) I have taken this in stride-
I feel that what I pay for health benefits is fine, even after it increased as much as it did - and I got No increase. I am smart enough to realize that money doesnt grow on trees - and when its gone, its Gone. This is just as true for the employer as it is the employee.

IM just happy to have insurance, and a Job (with benefits FAR better than most people have, or could ever wish to have)

I wish them the best of luck - its going to be a long fight they just might not win.
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RJ
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 14 Mar 2003

Posts: 327

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

These past two weeks I've been fortunate enough to be working downtown so I've been able to ride my bicycle everyday. I think it's about 5-6 miles. There are a ton of bikes on the commuter trails so maybe alternative modes of transportation are being utilized.

If anyone wants to visit me, I can be found on the NE corner of Washington and 5th Ave, 1st floor. Razz We're building a new bar/restaurant, some Italian joint. You will see my road bike locked up out front on the fence.

Oh yeah, the strike...go Union!
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rickrich
Geocacher


Joined: 06 Jul 2003

Posts: 673

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used to run a real time traffic data analysis website using the data from the MnDOT traffic sensors embedded in the pavement. MnDOT was nice enough to provide me with full documentation of where the sensors are. They have always provided the data feed to the public. You can still see the (now old) animations and statistics here:

http://tctraffic.0catch.com/

I primarily collected the data to see the effects of opening up the 394 sane lane. Most of the animations have been removed due to disk space limits, but if you are interested in seeing what one of those looked like, try clicking on 2001-December-04 at 5AM..

Unfortunately, I was not thinking clearly, and neglected to turn my data collection for this website back on before the strike began so we could have some kind of quantitative analysis of the situation.

These days, I don't need to drive the freeways to get to work, so all I have is a report from one friend who commutes from near Stillwater to downtown Mpls. Deleting the inflamatory parts, he says:
Quote:
I am pretty sure that traffic is BETTER now
that the buses are off the roads. My commute into downtown has been
improved by 15 or 20 minutes since the stike began.
No lie! Both the inbound and the homebound runs are jam free now.
I love it.

By itself, my friends opinion has no basis or statistical significance. But it may be an indicator of how the general public perceives the situation.

-Rick
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Centris
Past MnGCA Chair


Joined: 27 Nov 2002

Posts: 620

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup -- my hubby commutes between Anoka and St Paul every day and has trimmed 20-25 minutes off his commute every day since the strike started. He is actually home on time for dinner every night now.

The strike has not affected any of my friends or neighbors... most of them have taken up carpooling and are liking it. I wonder how many will go back to the bus when the strike is over?

We had talked about it a bit at college, and some of the kids are just not going downtown anymore, but they are still going out and such, just locally using the Anoka Traveller bus system. I bet this has really affected the downtown merchants. Confused
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jonsom
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 73

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This metro area has the worst mass transit system that I have ever seen, it does not affect me too much on my commute to work, since I am not able to use public transportation to get to or from work, unless I spent 1 to 4 hours to go about 6 miles, I have noticed that when I am working there is a lot less traffic on the sholders of the road that I have to worry about.
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15Tango
MnGCA Board


Joined: 17 Dec 2002

Posts: 860

PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2004 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I live in St. Paul and work in Lakeville, out past where the busses go (nearest stop is 6 miles from work in Apple Valley, and that's too far to walk unless I'm after a cache). There's also no busses running when I get off work at 2am, so even if I did work where the busses go, I wouldn't be able to use them anyhow. When the busses were running, I've been sitting next to them at red lights and have had them force me into oncoming traffic when the lights change, I've had them make left turns in front of me without signalling, and I've seen numerous other situations where they haven't followed the rules of the road that apply to every other vehicle out there (except for hacks). So, there hasn't been any real negative impact for me without busses on the streets. I suppose the impact will come later when there's less new KB caches out there to go seek.
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There comes a time in every young boy's life when he gets an irresistible urge to seek buried treasure.--Mark Twain
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