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State, Unions Reach Tappan Zee Bridge Labor Agreement

TARRYTOWN, N.Y. – A project labor agreement for the new Tappan Zee Bridge between the New York State Thruway Authority and 14 labor organizations includes provisions that officials said will save an estimated $452 million while creating employment opportunities across the region.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the deal Monday in a press release. The agreement includes provisions for settling jurisdictional disputes through a grievance process and does not permit strikes or other work disruptions.

"This agreement will save taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars, while putting in place important protections for our workers," Cuomo said. "For too long we have talked about replacing the Tappan Zee, and we cannot wait any longer. Now is the time for action."

The agreement also includes a standardized 40-hour work week with the flexibility to schedule four 10-hour work days, a higher ratio of apprentices to journeypersons, paying workers who arrive one hour prior to their shift $25 instead of an hour of overtime and standardized holidays that would eliminate overtime. Officials have agreed to participate in the Helmets to Hardhats program, which gives returning veterans construction jobs.

Officials must get final approval of the agreement by the Federal Highway Administration and the New York State Thruway Authority Board of Directors.

"This agreement is good for taxpayers, good for workers and good for the project,” said Howard P. Milstein, Chairperson of the New York State Thruway Authority.  “Significant savings will be realized and thousands of trade jobs will be secured because of this milestone agreement. It ensures that we will have reliable, local labor for the duration of the construction project."

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