1/7/13: The Union has notified the SEC's Office of Human Resources that SEC employees expect the transit subsidy to be increased to the new maximum level of $240 per month, in accordance with new legislation passed by Congress in connection with the Fiscal Cliff negotiations, and as is required under the terms of our collective bargaining agreement.
The CBA provides that the SEC will pass on to its employees any increase in public transit benefits or reopen the agreement for further negotiations. NTEU is prepared to deal with further negotiations if necessary, but the SEC should do the right thing and increase this important public transit subsidy without delay.
Indeed, all federal agencies should take the lead on this issue and serve as an example for the private sector. The United States currently uses approximately 25% of the world’s total annual oil output, but our nation represents only approximately 5% of the world’s population and holds less than 3% of the world’s proven oil reserves. Clearly, conservation measures are vitally important to our energy future.
The relatively modest public transit subsidy increase provided in the Fiscal Cliff legislation encourages workers not to drive their cars into the city, reducing carbon emissions. Lessening commuting greenhouse gasses in our cities, which cause increasing environmental damage, should be a critical priority across the government.
Back in 2009, when the transit subsidy increase first occurred, the SEC was one of the last agencies to implement the change. We hope that the agency does not repeat this pattern in 2013. NTEU strongly urges the SEC to do the right thing by increasing the transit subsidy immediately.