Thursday, March 12, 2009

Minneapolis Star Tribune Asks Court to Void Pressmen Union Contract

UPDATE, 8:40 p.m. Eastern: The Associated Press reported late today that the Star Tribune of Minneapolis and representatives of its printer's union said they will resume negotiations over cost cuts the newspaper insists it needs to survive.

The Star Tribune of Minneapolis is asking a bankruptcy court to void a labor contracts in order to reduce expenditures.

The Associated Press reported

Lawyers for the newspaper, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January, told Judge Robert Drain on Wednesday that it needs $3.5 million in concessions from its pressmen union as part of $20 million in total cuts from 10 unions.

"We're at a critical stage," Chief Financial Officer David Montgomery said. "We need to save every dollar we can possibly save to get us through this period and get us to the other side of the recession."

Montgomery said the nation's 15th-largest newspaper had failed to reach an agreement with the pressmen, forcing it to ask the court for the power to cancel the contract.

Drain did not indicate when he would rule. The second of three days of hearings was scheduled for Thursday afternoon in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York.

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