MBTA approves privatization of cash counting

BOSTON (AP) - The Boston-area transit agency’s fiscal control board has approved a contract that will privatize the agency’s cash collecting and counting operations.

The board approved the five-year $18.7 million contract with Virginia-based Brink’s on Thursday with a 4-0 vote, with one member absent.

The privatization effort was opposed by unions representing Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority workers. They say privatizing the so-called money room in the city’s Charlestown neighborhood would cost dozens of jobs.

T officials say outsourcing the operation will save millions of dollars per year.

Seven members of Carmen’s Union Local 589 were arrested Thursday while picketing outside the money room. They face arraignment in Charlestown Municipal Court on unlawful assembly charges. They’re accused of trying to prevent armored cars from entering or exiting the facility.

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