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Despite passing contract deadline, ABF, Teamsters agree to more talks

Both sides have reported that negotiations are going slowly; ABF hopes for concessions from the Teamsters and the union wants to increase wages and benefits. (The Trucker file photo)

The Trucker News Services

4/2/2013

ABF Freight Systems and the Teamsters have agreed to extend the deadline in their contract negotiations for at least 30 days, with both groups releasing statements confirming the extension.

Fort Smith, Ark.-based ABF, a less-than-truckload carrier, released a statement that confirmed the extension and assured its customers that business will continue with no interruptions. A Teamsters’ statement noted that when a deal is reached, any economic enhancements such as pay increases will be retroactive to April 1, according to published reports.

The contract between ABF and about 7,500 unionized employees was scheduled to have expired on Sunday.

Last year ABF withdrew from the National Master Freight Agreement (NMFA) and said it would negotiate separately with the union.

Both sides have reported that negotiations are going slowly; ABF hopes for concessions from the Teamsters and the union wants to increase wages and benefits.

In related news, ABF is set for a third court appointment April 10 to contest concessions between YRC and the Teamsters on the grounds that they violate the NMFA.

If the court were to reverse its previous two decisions, which favored YRC, it’s unclear if that could undermine YRC’s financial stability, which largely depended on the union’s concessions.

The Trucker staff can be reached to comment on this article at editor@thetrucker.com.

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