The Teamsters Union and Arkansas Best Freight System have agreed to another extension of the current labor contract, as the two sides seem far apart.
The move pushes back the deadline the two sides to come to terms on a new pact until the end of May. In March they agreed to push the deadline from the end of that month until the end of April.
One of the nation’s largest less-than-truckload carriers, ABF is reportedly seeing a 6.5% cut in wages in addition to significant health care benefit cuts.
In a statement ABF said, “Our goal is to return ABF to profitability, which will preserve jobs and retirements while still providing the best wage and benefits package in the industry. We must ensure ABF’s long-term viability with a contract that reflects how the rest of the industry operates. We can’t continue with the contract that produced $250 million in losses since 2009.”
The Teamsters expressed disappointment in ABF's latest offers in a bulletin released Friday about the talks going on in Dallas.
“While we’ve made progress on major local and over-the-road work rule issues over the last few months, the company’s new proposals this week are very disappointing and place our progress at risk,” said Gordon Sweeton, Teamsters ABF National Negotiating Committee co-chairman. “We’ve put millions of dollars worth of operational relief on the table but that apparently is not enough.”