Monday PM August 13th, 2007

Gas prices continue dropping...Fort Worth-based investors group behind Northwest bid to purchase Midwest Airlines...El Paso security company cited for requiring workers to join union or pay dues to keep their jobs...

Gas prices have been dropping, but at least one analyst says don't expect it to continue. The latest Lundberg Survey says the average price per gallon has fallen nearly 11 cents over the last two weeks. Analyst Trilby Lundberg says self-serve regular is now at $2.78 a gallon, while mid-grade is running $2.90 and premium is $3.02. Lundberg says residents in St. Louis are seeing the lowest prices, where a gallon of regular costs $2.52. Chicago has the highest price per gallon at $3.15.


Northwest Airlines is part of the investors group that's made a cash bid to buy the parent of Midwest Airlines of Milwaukee. The investors group is led by Fort Worth-based TPG Capital. It's offered a cash deal of $16 a share, which circumvents the hostile bid by Airtran Holdings of Orlando. The Midwest board of directors has voted to proceed with the TPG offer, while Airtran's offer has expired. Airtran has been pursuing Midwest since last fall, while TPG made its interest known a couple weeks ago. Midwest Air chairman and CEO Timothy Hoeksema had hoped to keep Midwest Airlines and Midwest Connect as stand-alone, regional airlines and out of the hands of Airtran, which had plans to make Milwaukee a second hub. Northwest's investment would help prevent Airtran from developing a hub in Milwaukee and drawing away passengers who fly to Northwest's hubs in Minneapolis, Detroit and Memphis. The deal needs federal antitrust approval. A definitive agreement is expected to be reached by late Wednesday.


Texas has secured a permanent injunction against an El Paso security company in a right to work case. Attorney General Gregg Abbott announced the final judgment with Deco-Akal, JV and its affiliates. The AG's case against the International Union, Security, Police and Fire Professionals of America, Local 725--is pending. Abbott last month sued Deco-Akal, which provides security services for the Immigration and Custom Enforcement Detention Center in El Paso. The suit said the union illegally agreed to a collective bargaining agreement that required all workers to join the union--or pay dues to keep their jobs. An administrative law judge in June ruled the company had to reinstate security guard Juan Vielma, who'd refused to pay membership dues. Abbott's office says Deco-Akal has reinstated Vielma, plus paid his lost wages and benefits.


Bio photo of Ed Mayberry

Ed Mayberry

Local Anchor, All Things Considered

Ed Mayberry has worked in radio since 1971, with many of those years spent on the rock 'n' roll disc jockey side of the business...