As Broome County officials continue to think about turning the operation of the public transit system over to a private entity, a contract agreement has been reached between the county and the transit union. 

officials say deal could save the county a million dollars over the four year life of the contract through a lower starting pay for employees, having workers kick in more for health insurance and delaying longevity payments by nine years.

The agreement with Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1145 is estimated to save the County $322,000 in the first year.

County executive Debra Preston had said there could be consideration of privatizing the BC Transit bus service.

That proposal drew protests not only from the union but from some passengers who feared their costs would go up while service would go down.

The County has not published a Request for Proposals from private firms that might be interested in operating the service.