Cap Metro Workers On Strike

Photos from this morning's picket line

While other Democrats were downstairs partying in celebration of Barack Obama's presidential win Tuesday night, City Council Member Mike Martinez was ensconced in a fifth-floor room of the Driskill Hotel working the phone, desperately trying to avert a strike by Capital Metro's workers.

But his efforts to intervene in the dispute between Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1091 and StarTran, the contractor that actually hires the workers, ultimately failed, and this morning the transit agency's drivers and maintenance workers hit the picket lines. (Click on pic at right to open image gallery of the strike.)

Bus service continues this morning, but on a greatly reduced schedule, and only on Cap Metro's most-used routes. See Cap Metro's website for route info.

"It's not something we want," said Cap Metro employee David Bowen outside Cap Metro headquarters this morning. "But apparently Cap Metro wants a strike, and they got it. We had a reasonable proposal on the table by Martinez and McCracken. We had it. The only reason we can assume they didn’t respond to it or didn’t agree to it was because of the audit." (Martinez's proposal called for an audit of Cap Metro's finances.)

"I paid up my bills, and I’m in for the long haul," said Bowen, a bus driver for 32 years, when asked how he and his family would cope. "We’re not going to eat as good as we’re accustomed. Beans, tortillas, whatever it takes to survive through it. Just going to try to stay afloat.

"Everyone that got on my bus yesterday said, ‘We’re behind you, thank you,'" Bowen said.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Capital Metro
Halloween Storm Update
Halloween Storm Update
Closures everywhere and tornado warnings

Richard Whittaker, Oct. 30, 2015

Thundersleet Brings Late Starts (Updated)
Thundersleet Brings Late Starts (Updated)
Another night of freezing conditions delays primary voting hours

Richard Whittaker, March 3, 2014

More Transportation
Austin Transportation Guide
Austin Transportation Guide
How to get around Austin, with or without your own wheels

Katie Walsh, March 3, 2017

Getting Around Austin
Getting Around Austin
Explore Downtown without a car and without getting lost

Annamarya Scaccia, June 22, 2016

More by Lee Nichols
Game Changer
Game Changer
A new football culture for Austin bars

Oct. 23, 2015

Beer Flights
Beer Flights
Celis: welcome home

Aug. 17, 2012

KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Transportation, Capital Metro, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1091, StarTran, Mike Martinez

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle