PHILADELPHIA – No new talks are scheduled as the strike by Philadelphia bus drivers, subway and trolley conductors and mechanics enters its second work week following the collapse of a proposed deal.
The largest union of Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority workers wants an independent audit of pension funds. The union is also rejecting language that could reopen the contract if SEPTA's costs increase due to national health care reform.
Gov. Ed Rendell had been brokering the talks until they broke off Saturday evening. He wants union members to vote on the contract proposal Monday. Transport Workers Local 234 president Willie Brown says the union's constitution will not permit that.
A 2005 SEPTA strike lasted seven days, while a 1998 transit strike lasted for 40 days.
SEPTA averages more than 928,000 trips each weekday.