DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The contract between the Dayton Regional Transit Authority (RTA) and Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) expires at the end of the month, which means a potential strike could happen if an agreement isn’t made.

The ATU president Glenn Salyer says the main concern surrounds healthcare. In January the ATU went on strike for four days leaving thousands in the region without transportation over the same issue.

“We have a hundred new employees and at best their being paid $14.40 an hour and they’re being asked on a family plan that they could possibly see $11,000 a year in expenses,” said Salyer.

The RTA’s CEO Mark Donaghy released the following statement regarding the matter:

I am disappointed that instead of negotiating with RTA or through the state appointed mediator that Local 1385 leadership has resorted to using the media and threatening the public with another strike to further his interests.  RTA has offered the union a proposal that allows their members to reduce their premium share for health insurance by one-third.  The union’s current proposal would increase costs to RTA by $1.4 million per year.  Given our financial situation, having to address a $3 million deficit for 2018 which will cause us to consider raising fares and to reduce service, the union proposal is just not acceptable as it would require further cuts in service to accommodate.  We have offered to meet with the union and the mediator and hope to do so soon.”

Salyer says the ATU does not want to go on strike and that the union would accept the same deal they agreed upon last time.