COTA Prepares for Strike

Officials with the Central Ohio Transit Authority are preparing for a strike while saying they hope a work stoppage can be avoided.

Talks between COTA management and its workers’ union broke off in March, and both sides are awaiting the results of a Fact Finder’s report which is expected June 17th. Both sides have seven days to accept or reject the report.

COTA officials declined to specify their differences with the union, but Duane Marbury of the Transport Workers Union of America, Local 208 says several issues separate the two sides, including wages, part-time help and what he describes as a “drastic” increase in what workers pay for health insurance.

COTA President/CEO William Lhota says he hopes the differences do not lead to a work stoppage. He says COTA wants to resolve contract issues without interrupting service to the public.

COTA officials say, in the event of a strike, they expect service levels to be reduced.