Sun-Times, Guild Have Tentative Deal

By BJ Lutz
|  Wednesday, Oct 7, 2009  |  Updated 6:20 PM CDT
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The sun hasn't set at the Chicago's oldest daily newspaper.

After days of negotiations and union votes that could have spelled doom, the Chicago Sun-Times reported that its owner, the Sun-Times Media Group, has reached a tentative agreement on a concessions package with all five of its Guild units.

"They have said they will recommend the revised amendment to all of their members prior to voting that begins today," Chicago Sun-Times Publisher John Barron said in a statement Wednesday afternoon.

The concessions package will be presentated to employees Wednesday afternoon and evening.

Last month, members of the Chicago Newspaper Guild were asked to lock in for at least three years the temporary 15 percent wage cuts imposed this spring. Other demands included wiping out seniority rules and reducing severance guarantees.  Those terms were rejected.

Details of the latest agreement were not released.

On Tuesday, a day after the deadline passed for bid offers, a Lisle-based hedge fund manager said he wanted to put in an offer but had been blocked from meeting with union representatives.  The company denied that claim.

If approved, Wednesday's deal makes easier a sale to businessman Jim Tyree in bankruptcy court.  Tyree's group has offered $25 million for the newspaper, which filed for bankruptcy on March 31.

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