Palma.—SFM senior management said yesterday that the move comes in an attempt to save money on staff at a time when the company is undergoing a collective bargaining process with the unions.

The proposal by SFM would enable the firm to maximise human resources. At the moment, staff are having to attend to the public in station ticket offices and to monitor the public passing backwards and forwards through the barriers.

Currently, one of the chief points of friction between railway service employees and the company is that SFM wants one ticket inspector on each train whereas at the moment, three could operate at any one time on a single journey. An SFM inspector, apart from his normal salary has three extra pay allowances which can accumulate to 1'000 euros a month.

One of the principal problems facing SFM is the tremendously high cost of staffing. Currently, the 194 workers in the company are costing SFM 10.4 million euros a year. This means that on average, each one of the employees costs 53'000 euros to employ annually.

Majorcan Railway Services wants to reach an agreement with the SFM Works Committee to bring the working conditions of company staff in line with those of other government employees.

The working conditions of SFM staff are exceptional when compared to other public service workers in that they are committed to working 100 hours less over the course of a year. SFM staff have six days more holiday a year. All the drivers have an extra monthly allowance of 450 euros if they make themselves available to take shifts on the Metro as well as the railway.