UTU Local 377 members — engineers, conductors and brakemen — employed by Buffalo & Pittsburgh Railroad have ratified a new five-year agreement by an almost 8-to-1 margin.

Balloting was by craft under provisions of the UTU constitution guaranteeing craft autonomy; and each of the crafts was solidly in favor of the agreement.

More than 90 percent of members cast ballots, which UTU International officials termed “outstanding and quite typical of Local 377’s membership.”

The newly ratified agreement provides for general wage increases, guaranteed extra boards, 401(k) plan enhancements, and personal incentive bonuses.

UTU General Chairperson John Lesniewski (GO 049), who led the negotiations, called the ratified agreement “a great contract in the best of times, and extraordinary during this lean economic climate.”

Lesniewski praised the efforts of his negotiating team, which included Vice General Chairperson Steven Mavity and Local 377 Chairperson Harry Mahaffey.

Lesniewski also thanked UTU International President Mike Futhey and GO 049 Vice General Chairperson Jeremy Ferguson “for their advice and support directed towards reaching this pact.”

Buffalo & Pittsburgh, acquired by holding company Genesee & Wyoming in 1988, is a 368-mile regional railroad serving western New York and western Pennsylvania, and connects with major railroads Canadian Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern.