There were also signs of growing frustration at the protracted nature of the negotiations. Ehrlich wrote:

There is very little time left to solve this. A pension freeze must be in place by July 1 and will take months to administer under pension regulations, so the process must begin very soon. If the pension is not frozen, cuts will have to be made elsewhere. And as [Human Resources VP] Jessica Bruce said in her note to staff last week, personnel costs are the company’s biggest expense.

…The future of the company rests on a swift and reasonable conclusion to negotiations.

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Joel Meares is a former CJR assistant editor.