The ACT Government has reached an important milestone in the negotiations with the Transport Workers Union (TWU) over the ACTION enterprise bargaining agreement, Minister for Territory and Municipal Services, Simon Corbell, announced today.

“The government has put a position to the TWU which I believe is one that will be largely supported by the ACTION staff when a vote is taken in coming weeks,” Mr Corbell said.

“The Government is committed to ensuring that Canberrans have access to a reliable and efficient public transport network, I am pleased that the Government has been able to work through a number of issues to arrive at this stage in the process.

“It is important that the Government and the TWU reach a position quickly to ensure that bus services continue to run without interruption from industrial action, and this agreement is one that should prevent any further inconvenience to the traveling public.”

Key aspects of the government’s offer include:
• a 2.5 percent pay increase for 2010-11 followed by a three percent pay increase in 2011-12 and 2012-13
• a $650 sign on bonus;
• improved weekend rostering arrangements; and
• increased workforce flexibility in workshops.

The ACT Government has recently written to both the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) and Transport Workers Union (TWU) with a formal offer detailing the preferred position following more than 18 months of bargaining.

Mr Corbell said that the AMWU had previously indicated to the government its in-principle support to the proposal and the TWU recently conducted one paid meeting with its members to discuss the ACT government’s offer.

“It is expected that the finalised agreement offer will be put to the staff for their consideration and vote toward the end of this month,” Mr Corbell said.

“With the recent successful take-up of the new MyWay ticketing system and new customer initiatives around the corner including the $2.5 million expansion to services, a $12 million real time passenger information system, modern on-line journey planner and a progressive refurbishment of the Woden bus depot, Canberrans
should look forward to ongoing investment and improvement in their public transport services.

“I would like to thank all the organisations and individuals involved in this bargaining process, and look forward to seeing a positive result from the staff at ACTION.”