The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Los Angeles:
MTA Rewards Management for Cutting Workers’ Benefits

Nov 8, 2004

The Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) gave pay raises to its executives, increasing the number of managers who make over $100,000 from 108 to 114.

An MTA spokesman defended the pay raises, saying that the increase is not more than 2.5%, which is what the unionized work force got also.

That’s a lie. Not only are some executives’ raises way over 2.5%, these managers also got all kinds of bonuses. In addition to his $300,000 salary, for example, CEO Roger Snoble is getting more than $50,000 in allowances–$30,000 for his pension, $12,000 for a car and $10,000 for housing.

This is the company that fought a strike of its mechanics last year, pretending it did not have enough money to pay health insurance premiums for its workers. Forcing the workers out for more than a month, the MTA finally imposed cuts on the health care benefits.

The MTA’s two labor negotiators were handily rewarded for cutting workers’ benefits, gaining raises of eight% and 12%, bringing their salaries to $161,000 and $126,000, respectively. The MTA spokesman defended these raises, saying that the labor executives’ expertise "has saved taxpayers millions of dollars."

Another shameless lie! Whatever money these thieves saved by cutting it from the health care benefits of the workers and their families was more than eaten up by massive increases in executive compensation and by billions of dollars in very profitable contracts to construction magnates.