By paulgillin | May 4, 2009 - 4:04 pm - Posted in Business News, NewMedia

The Boston Globe will live to fight another day.  To no one’s particular surprise, the newspaper’s management said this afternoon it won’t file the 60 days’ notice required to shut down operations after six of its seven unions came to terms.  Unions representing delivery truck drivers, mailers, press operators, electricians, machinists and technical services workers all agree to concessions demanded by the New York Times Co. to keep the newspaper publishing. The lone union still holding out is the biggest one: the Newspaper Guild. 

Guild leaders left a negotiating session this morning without a deal.  The two sides are reportedly polarized over the issue of lifetime job guarantees extended to about 190 of the Guild’s 600 members.  Other unions with similar guarantees have reportedly make concessions, but the Guild is holding firm.  Ironically, the guarantees were put in place by many newspaper companies in the 1960s and 1970s to help management streamline the process of automating their production facilities.  As the fortunes of these businesses have plummeted in recent years, the guarantees have become an albatross around management’s neck.

Boston.com’s coverage of the news bore an unusual headline: “Globe says it won’t file notice to close plant.”  The choice of wording would indicate that the New York Times Co. hasn’t yet withdrawn its threat to close the newspaper, although that possibility now seems remote.  Union members must still ratify the proposed agreements and if the Guild doesn’t come to terms, it’s possible that the whole saga could start up again.

Boston.com has details of the offer the Guild says was presented to – and rejected by – Globe management. 

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