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Third Reno-Sparks bus service strike in four months begins

November 10, 2021 GMT

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Union bus drivers went on strike in Reno and Sparks Tuesday for the third time in four months in a lingering labor dispute with the foreign-based operator of the regional bus service over wages, benefits and scheduling.

Washoe County’s Regional Transportation Commission said it will maintain free, limited service on some routes and run contingency transit service similar to what it has done during the previous two strikes.

“I am very disappointed that a third strike is occurring,” RTC Executive Director Bill Thomas said in a statement Tuesday. “We are going to do everything we can do continue to get people where they need to go.”

The most recent bus driver strike lasted 23 days, ending on October 19 when union workers returned to their jobs and negotiations resumed.

“We have been bargaining in good faith, but Paris (France)-based, for-profit Keolis insisted on placing a teak-it-or-leave-it, worst-last offer on the table,” said Gary Watson, president of Teamsters Local 522. He said nine out of 10 union members rejected the latest offer during a vote on Monday.