Workers were ready to strike, according to John Fageaux Jr., president of the Office Clerical Unit, Local 63, of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union. “Talks are over … we’ve gone as far as we could go and done everything we could do,” Fageaux said in comments Wednesday to radio station KNX 1070. Fageaux didn’t return calls Thursday from The Associated Press. The 15,000-member ILWU has indicated that longshoremen would honor picket lines if the 750 clerical workers strike. The move would effectively stop the loading and unloading of cargo at the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. Despite the walkout threat, no picket lines had developed. The port complex accounts for more than 40 percent of all the cargo container traffic – everything from cars and electronics toys and clothing – coming into the United States. All told, Local 63 represents workers for 17 shipping companies and other cargo firms at the twin ports. The clerks work at marine terminals and handle bookings for the export of cargo and other transport documents.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! LOS ANGELES – Negotiators for port clerks have reached an impasse in contract talks with shippers and other employers that threatens to prompt a strike and shut down the flow of container traffic at the nation’s largest port complex. “The union declared an impasse,” Steve Berry, lead negotiator for the marine terminal operators who employ the office clerks, told The Associated Press on Thursday. “We tried several different ideas to break the logjam, all of which were rejected by the union. They stuck to their last best final position they communicated last Saturday.” Berry said. Berry said the two sides could try to talk further Thursday morning.
Stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via email, podcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @aprn.Download AudioAs U.S. buys more guns, state agency has more dough than it can handleLiz Ruskin, APRN – WashingtonThe Alaska Division of Wildlife Conservation is largely funded by a federal tax on the sale of guns and ammunition, and sales nationwide are booming. But now the division may have to give back a portion of its bounty.Retired workers file dental benefits suitAndrew Kitchenman, KTOO/APRN – JuneauAn association of retired state workers has filed a lawsuit saying state cuts to dental benefits violate the Alaska constitution.Court rules in favor of municipalities in pipeline caseRobert Hannon, KUAC – FairbanksA ruling by the Alaska Supreme Court Friday has strengthened the role municipalities have in setting the tax value of Trans-Alaska Pipeline and similar structures. The ruling overturns a lower court decision that said the Alaska Department of Revenue had the final say.Congress OKs Coast Guard bill to transfer landsLiz Ruskin, APRN-WashingtonCongress has approved a Coast Guard bill that includes several land transfers Alaska’s congressional delegation has pursued for years. One of them is at Point Spencer, to advance the possible construction of an Arctic deepwater port near Nome.BlueCrest Energy updates drilling plansQuinton Chandler, KBBI-HomerBlueCrest Energy, the company drilling for oil north of Anchor Point, gave an update on their effort at a forum in Kenai last week.Reports conflict on Donlin Creek Mine’s effectsAnna Rose MacArthur, KYUK-BethelTwo federal agencies have come to different conclusions on the potential effects the proposed Donlin Creek mine could have on subsistence along the Kuskokwim River. The site sits 10 miles north of the village of Crooked Creek. Donlin estimates it could excavate 34 million ounces of gold over almost three decades.3 Togiak men die in boating accident after successful huntDave Bendinger, KDLG-DillinghamA moose hunting trip ended in tragedy this weekend in Togiak, after a boat carrying three men and three moose was swamped in heavy surf. The three men, who all died, were attempting to cross from the mouth of the Togiak River back to the village just after dark Saturday.How a deer can cause a plane crashEmily Kwong, KCAW-SitkaThroughout this year’s hunting season, Sitka’s airport has been contending with an unusual issue: dead deer. Carcasses have been washing up on the runway since November, attracting birds. And that has posed a big problem to airport operations. KCAW’s Emily Kwong has more.