NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — NJ TRANSIT engineers have voted to strike if their contract dispute is not resolved.

However, union members are hoping the federal government will create a panel to help bring about an agreement. Union officials say the creation of the board would be enough to forestall a strike for the immediate future.

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David Decker of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen tells the union is looking for an amicable agreement and the strike vote was an action to comply with bylaws should all other avenues break down.

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Contract talks between the 17 unions representing NJ TRANSIT railroad workers and the agency broke down when the National Mediation Board ended the process last month.

The railway unions have been in negotiations since 2011 while unions representing police and bus workers have been in talks since 2010.

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