Announcement of the Establishment and Membership of Emergency Board No. 199 To Investigate a Railroad Labor Dispute

November 16, 1982

The President announced today the creation of Presidential Emergency Board No. 199 to investigate and make recommendations for settlement of a current dispute between the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and employees represented by 14 labor organizations.

The President, by Executive order, created the Emergency Board at the request of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority, parent body of the LIRR. The Long Island Rail Road is the largest commuter railroad in the United States, transporting 283,000 passengers each weekday over a 330-mile system extending from Manhattan to the end of Long Island. In addition, LIRR provides the only rail freight service on Long Island and connects with the Nation's rail system through New York City. A strike on the Long Island Rail Road would have a severe impact on the economy of the New York metropolitan area, disrupting commuter travel and trucking, and leading to increased consumption of gasoline.

Consequently, the President invoked the emergency board procedures of the Railway Labor Act applicable to commuter railroads, which provide that the Board will report its findings and recommendations for settlement to the President within 30 days. The parties must then consider the recommendations of the Emergency Board and endeavor to resolve their differences without engaging in self-help during a subsequent 90-day period.

The President appointed Arvid Anderson, chairman of the New York City Office of Collective Bargaining, to serve as Chairman of the Emergency Board. Richard T. Niner, an investment adviser from Greenwich, Conn., and Professor Daniel G. Collins of the New York University School of Law, were named as members of the Board. These same people are presently serving as Emergency Board No. 198, investigating a dispute between the Metro-North Railroad Company and 17 labor organizations.

Note: The White House press release included a fact sheet on the Long Island Rail Road.