Angry Words On Eve OF Bus Driver Talks

The Milwaukee County Transit System and its bus drivers' union return to the bargaining table Thursday, but if their words on Wednesday are any indication, a contract agreement is a long way off.

\"I'm not planning on doing a job stoppage.  The problem is, is the company ready to go talk?\" said Union President James Macon at a Wednesday afternoon press conference.  He criticized Milwaukee County as he has in the past for not agreeing to take this dispute to arbitration.   But he stopped short of directly threatening a strike, like the three day walkout that created problems for commuters during Summerfest.

MCTS released a sharply worded statement of its own Wednesday, criticizing union leader Macon for using \"vulgar language\" and accusing him of threatening a strike.   

\"Macon is hoping his antics distract the public and media from the true cost of his contract demands.\" said the statement.  \"He's demanding $9 million more than what MCTS can afford.\"

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