Canadian port truckers score $150k in back wages following gov’t audit

Port Metro of VancouverPort Metro of Vancouver

Several Port of Metro Vancouver truckers have received a total of $152,140 from three companies after province authorities concluded the carriers had not complied with a pay agreement reached in 2014.

Last December, British Columbia enacted wage and working conditions laws for PMV truckers and created the office of port trucking commissioner. On Nov. 20, the commissioner announced that port carrier Columbia Containers owed $106,501 in fuel surcharges to 14 independent owner-operators. Also, regarding back pay, AC Transport would pay $36,374 to 37 company drivers and Amalgamated Transport Systems $9,265 to 10 drivers.

Acting commissioner Corinn Bell could have fined each company up to $500,000, but did not because the companies cooperated and promptly paid the amounts owed. This fall, Bell announced that none of the first six companies audited had met the new pay rates and 13 additional audits were underway.

Andy Smith resigned Sep. 15 after serving only seven months as the first commissioner in office. Unifor, which represents the port’s union truckers, had opposed the appointment because Smith heads the province’s Maritime Employers Association.