SMART TD retired General Chairperson Cory Mayberry (Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway GCA 329) was fatally injured in a motorcycle crash at 2:30 p.m. November 4, 2015. Mayberry served as general chairperson for 13 years representing switchmen, hostlers and yardmasters on the former Elgin, Joliet and Eastern and Gary Railway.

He is survived by his wife Helen (Vorgias) Mayberry; sons, Justin Mayberry of Valparaiso, Frank (Kira) Quarles, Cory (Tylar Fiscus) Mayberry II; mother, Anna Ross and step father, Ben Ross; brother, Eric (Karen) Mayberry; sister, Debi Krall; grandchildren, Annah Mayberry and Tyler Peek and one granddaughter on the way; and numerous nieces, nephews and extended family and friends. He was preceded in death by his father, Robert Mayberry; sisters, Lorrie Boyd and Kimberly Duncan.

SMART TD Vice President David Wier said, “Mayberry was one-of-a-kind and represented his members with everything he had. He was the consummate general chairperson and will be sorely missed by his SMART TD brothers and sisters.”

Arrangements are under the care and direction of Edmonds & Evans Funeral Home, 6941 Central Avenue, Portage, Ind. Visitation for friends and family will be November 8 from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Funeral services will be held November 9 at 10:00 a.m. Interment will follow at Graceland Cemetery, Valparaiso, Ind.

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Tacoma Rail logo_FotorSMART Transportation Division-represented trainmen (Local 556 of Tacoma, Wash.) employed by Tacoma Rail have ratified a new six and one-half (6.5) year agreement by an overwhelming majority.

The agreement provides for true parity for all trainmen, with the elimination of entry rates and the consolidation of all rates into a single rate of pay for conductor positions with all arbitrary and short crew allowances rolled into the daily rate, resulting in an hourly rate of pay increase effective July 1, 2017. The agreement establishes a standard crew consist of two (2) trainmen on all assignments, a guaranteed extra board with a pass provision, and double time for working holidays.

The agreement also provides for a three percent deferred compensation match, a ratification incentive, improved meal periods, and boot allowance provisions.

SMART Transportation Division Vice President Dave Wier, who assisted with the mediated negotiations, congratulated TMB General Chairperson Clayton Hoffman, Vice Chairperson Shawn Merrill and former Vice Chairperson John Pace for “the exceptional effort put forth in bringing the members’ concerns to the bargaining table and negotiating an agreement with significant improvements in wages and working conditions. This is an agreement that our members can be proud of.”

CN_red_logoSMART Transportation Division-represented conductors and trainmen employed by the Canadian National/Illinois Central Railroad have ratified a new six-year agreement, Vice President Dave Wier reports.

The agreement provides for six annual wage increases retroactive to Aug. 1, 2010, with the final wage increase to be effective Jan. 1, 2015, totaling 18.6 percent and resulting in a cumulative wage increase of 20.08 percent over the life of the agreement. The accord includes conductor certification pay rolled into the rates of pay and full retroactive back pay for all active trainmen and employees that retired or died subsequent to Aug. 1, 2010.

The agreement also lowers the calculated vacation qualification days from 240 to 160 days; increases the meal allowance to $12 after four hours and every eight hours thereafter at the away-from-home terminal; improves bereavement leave; provides for a furlough retention board; institutes provisions for temporary transfer to other CN properties, and establishes seniority on the first day of compensated service.

It also establishes regular assignments after four consecutive days of similar-type work and provides for six-and-two and four-and-two work rest cycles with local negotiations concerning eleven-and-three work rest cycles. Participation in the National Health and Welfare plans continues.

“The work rest cycles are, six days of work followed by two days of rest, and four days of work followed by two days of rest, in a 14-day period,” Wier said. “The 11 and three is subject to local negotiations and includes ‘Smart Rest,’ to allow an employee’s consecutive work days to be reset by taking a 24-hour period off. This complies with Rail Safety Improvement Act regulations.”

Wier, who assisted with the mediated negotiations, expressed his appreciation to CN/IC GO 401 General Chairperson Tracy Bublitz (234), retired General Chairperson R.W. “Red” Dare (1525), GO 433 Acting General Chairperson Butch St. John (1557) and GO 433 General Committee Secretary Jerry “J.J.” Russum (1334) for their exceptional effort in bringing the members’ concerns to the bargaining table.

“This agreement will make their members some of the highest paid rail employees in the country,” Wier said.


UTU-represented yardmen, hostlers and yardmasters employed by Gary Railway and members of UTU Local 1383 have ratified separate six-year agreements.

The contracts provide for annual wage increases, lump-sum percentage back-pay, improved bereavement leave, sickness/disability insurance and a reduced monthly health and welfare contribution. Also included is enrollment in the Transtar insurance benefit program.

UTU International Vice President Dave Wier, who assisted with the negotiations, congratulated General Chairperson Cory Mayberry (GO 329), Local 1383 Chairperson Tommy Collins, and Vice Local Chairperson Brian McWilliams for “the exceptional effort put forth during the negotiations and ratification process that resulted in agreements with substantial improvements in wages and benefits.”

Gary Railway, a Transtar property, is a Class III switching carrier operating 63 miles of yard track in Gary, Ind., primarily serving U.S. Steel



UTU-represented yardmasters and hostlers employed by the Elgin, Joliet and Eastern Railway have ratified separate new six-year agreements by overwhelming majorities.

The new agreements provide for annual wage increases and back-pay; establish 401-k retirement plans, disability insurance and prior rights; increase life insurance; and place those members under the national railroad health and welfare plan that includes dental and vision coverage and provides for early retirement major medical coverage.

UTU International Vice President Dave Wier, who assisted with the negotiations, congratulated General Chairperson Cory Mayberry and Vice General Chairpersons Kevin Wright and Tommy Collins (all GO 329), for “ their dedication to the membership in negotiating and explaining contracts that provide for improvements in wages and benefits and deliver employment security and parity.” 

In September, UTU-represented brakemen, conductors and yardmen employed by Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway ratified a new agreement that also was negotiated with the assistance of Wier.


UTU-represented employees of Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway and Toledo, Peoria & Western Railway have ratified new five-year agreements. Negotiating assistance on both railroads was provided by UTU International Vice President Dave Wier.

On EJ&E, the ratified contract provides that conductors, brakemen and yardmen receive wage increases, back-pay, an employment guarantee with furlough protection, guaranteed extra boards, elimination of rate progression for conductors/foremen, and 90 percent entry rates for brakemen and helpers that rises to 100 percent after one year of service.

Also established by the new agreement is a 401(k) plan and disability insurance, more liberal qualification for vacations, and coverage under the National Railway Health and Welfare Plan that includes early retirement and four months of additional health care insurance for dismissed or furloughed employees.

Wier praised the efforts of General Chairpersons Cory Mayberry (GO 329) and Rich Barandela (GO 330), Vice General Chairperson Kevin Wright (GO 329), and Local 740 Chairpersons Mike Caudillo and Ed Cox for “the exceptional effort put forth during the long and difficult negotiations that resulted in an agreement with dramatic improvements in wages and benefits, and provides employment security and parity for members.” 

On TP&W, the ratified contract provides for wage increases with additional compensation for conductors certified as engineers, participation in the RailAmerica Incentive Compensation Plan (with an opt-out provision providing an additional 1 percent annual wage increase), improved working conditions and special allowances.

Wier congratulated General Chairperson Rob Ferrier (GO TPW) and Local 198 Vice Local Chairperson Steve Benedict for “the outstanding effort put forth. The wage increases, coupled with quarterly incentive payments provide members with outstanding pay increases,” Wier said.”

EJ&E, a Class II railroad and a U.S. subsidiary of Canadian National Railway, operates in Illinois and Indiana suburbs surrounding Chicago.

TP&W, a short line and RailAmerica property, operates in Illinois and Indiana.


UTU-represented trainmen and engineers on Dallas, Garland & Northeastern Railroad have overwhelmingly ratified a new five-year agreement.

The contract provides for wage increases with full back pay, an incentive compensation plan with an opt-out provision allowing for additional wage increases,  improved working conditions, special allowances, overtime, holiday rules and a seniority maintenance provision.
UTU International Vice President Dave Wier, who assisted with the negotiations, congratulated General Chairperson Joe Newsom, Local 965 Vice Local Chairperson Bobby Taylor and Local 965 Vice Local Chairperson Robert D. Mahan for “the outstanding effort put forth in negotiating an agreement with substantial improvements in wages and working conditions. The wage increases coupled with the quarterly incentive payments provide the membership with outstanding pay increases.”  
Dallas, Garland & Northeastern Railroad, a RailAmerica property headquartered in Richardson, Texas, is a complex switching terminal railroad made up of a conglomeration of spurs and industrial leads in the Dallas and North Dallas area. It operates 337 miles of rail line in the Dallas and North Dallas area, using a combination of owned and leased lines and trackage rights, and connects with BNSF, Kansas City Southern and Union Pacific.


Two new UTU negotiated rail agreements have been ratified by members.

UTU-represented trainmen and engineers employed by Evansville & Western Railroad overwhelmingly ratified a new five-year agreement, while UTU-represented trainmen and engineers employed by Iowa Interstate Railroad ratified a new six-year agreement.
The Evansville & Western agreement provides for substantial wage increases with full back-pay, certification pay for conductors and engineers, freezes health care insurance contributions, preserves cost-of-living adjustments, and improves working conditions and seniority moves.

UTU International Vice-President Dave Wier, who assisted with the negotiations, congratulated General Chairperson R.W. “Red” Dare (Canadian National, GO 433) and Local 1525 Chairperson Danny Kautzman for “the great effort put forth in negotiating an agreement with dramatic improvements in wages and working conditions. The wage increases, coupled with the certification pay, provide members with outstanding increases in the daily rates of pay,” Wier said. 

The Iowa Interstate agreement provides for wage increases, a boost in the meal allowance, plus improvements in vacation provisions, working conditions and allowances. Also established is a seniority maintenance provision, and covered employees will gain coverage under the UTU National Health and Welfare Plan as well as the national dental and vision plans. 
Wier also assisted with the Iowa Interstate negotiations. He praised General Chairperson Dave McFarland, Local 258 Chairperson Norman Kitchen, and Local 258 President Jesse West for “the extraordinary effort put forth in negotiating a solid agreement with substantial improvements in wages, working conditions and health care benefits. The National Health and Welfare package is far superior to the former Iowa Interstate plan in all aspects and was an integral part of the negotiation process,” Wier said.

Evansville & Western operates some 124 route miles between Evansville, Ind., and Owkawville, Ill, with a branch to Mt. Vernon, Ind. Iowa Interstate operates almost 600 route miles between Council Bluffs, Iowa, and Chicago, with a branch to Peoria, Ill., and connects with all major North American rail systems.