Members of rail labor’s Coordinated Bargaining Group (CBG), composed of representatives from the SMART Transportation Division, the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, the American Train Dispatchers Association, the National Conference of Firemen and Oilers/SEIU, The Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen and the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron Ship Builders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers met with the National Carriers Conference Committee (NCCC) in Chicago on October 14, 2015 to continue negotiations on a new national rail contract. This meeting was the latest in a series that commenced early in 2015.
Although a final agreement is not yet in sight, substantive progress was made in identifying the issues of greatest importance to both sides and serious discussions are ongoing. Both parties believe that a voluntary agreement is the desired outcome and to that end it was agreed to continue negotiations without the assistance of a third party. The next session is scheduled for November in Crystal City, Virginia, with additional meetings set for the first quarter of 2016.