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NY Lawmakers Call on Gov. Cuomo to Help Halt Potential Strike

by Kris Venezia
A A
LIRR Train.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Flickr 

Long Island Rail Road workers have threatened to strike if demands in contract negotiations aren't met.

New York lawmakers are worried about a potential Long Island Rail Road strike. 

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority and LIRR unions are struggling to come to an agreement on a contract for employees, and the unions have threatened to strike as early as July 20.

State Senator Carl Marcellino represents parts of Nassau and Suffolk Counties on Long Island. He said Governor Andrew Cuomo could use his authority to help remedy the situation. 

"I think he could resolve this," Marcellino said. "He did it with the subways and buses a few weeks ago, and I think my constituents, his constituents, would appreciate it."

In April, Governor Cuomo used his power to bring the MTA and Transport Workers Union together on a contract agreement, preventing a potential strike with New York City's public transportation employees. 

Christopher Natale of the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalman said unions are prepared to strike on July 20, which could affect as many as 300,000 riders. Officials say the strike would cause a ripple effect, causing problems for more than just the riders. 

"Some [riders] might not be able to get to work; that would impact the businesses that they're involved with," he said. "Some [riders] use the railroad to go to the beaches in various places; they might not be able to get there. That impacts the vendors at the beaches."

The MTA and LIRR unions plan to meet together with the National Mediation Board next Wednesday. 

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