Business Briefs

Reported by Star-Bulletin staff & wire

Wednesday, May 5, 1999

Union concedes defeat in strike

Hawaii Teamsters Local 996 has officially called off its two-month strike at Young Laundry & Drycleaning, after losing a representation election.

Mel Kahele, union president, yesterday said the Teamsters believe that the vote against the union was dominated by employees hired to replace union members who were out on a legitimate and legal strike. But he said that the union's loss, after a vote recount supervised by the National Labor Relations Board, means the union is out and the strikers are out of work.

Russell Drace, Young Laundry owner and president, said the 117-61 vote against the Teamsters means the workers have made it clear they don't want the union.

Hana hotel risks county foreclosure

HANA -- Maui County may foreclose on the struggling Hotel Hana-Maui at the end of the month if the hotel owner doesn't settle a $500,000 tax bill.

Keola Hana Maui has owed the county back taxes since 1997 and defaulted on a repayment schedule last year. The $500,000 total includes interest and penalties. The owner has until May 31 to pay in full or the county will file for foreclosure, said Deputy Corporation Counsel Traci Fujita Villarosa.

County Managing Director Grant Chun said Keola Hana Maui told him it would raise the necessary money by the end of the month.

MCI WorldCom won't buy Nextel

NEW YORK -- MCI WorldCom Inc., the nation's No. 2 long-distance telephone company, is expected to announce today that it has called off talks to acquire Nextel Communications Inc. after weeks of fruitless negotiations to buy the wireless phone company, according to a person familiar with MCI's plans. MCI WorldCom is the only major long-distance company without a stake in the $33 billion U.S. wireless business. The Jackson, Miss.-based company started discussions with Nextel after it lost a bidding war to buy AirTouch Communications Inc. earlier this year. The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the breakdown of the talks was amicable.

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