Labor talks down to the wire


Officials of Teamsters Local 399 and several craft unions continued to negotiate with studio reps late Tuesday, with the labor groups' previous contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers set to expire at midnight.

An agreement appeared close for the drivers, electricians, plumbers and others, sources said. But it wasn't clear whether a pact could be struck by midnight or if another session would immediately be scheduled if issues remained unsettled.

The Teamsters took a strike vote July 22 to keep pressure on management in the homestretch of the negotiations, according to a well-placed source.

The parties resumed their talks Monday after a brief hiatus. Lingering pay and benefit issues remained on the table following sessions held in late June.

Meanwhile, the AMPTP's separate negotiations with the WGA have been put on hold until the Teamsters talks conclude. The guild has participated in two negotiating sessions so far, with the current AMPTP-WGA pact set to expire Oct. 31.