Fate of Inky, DN up in air

The $139 million sale of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News fell through yesterday, due to one unsigned union contract causing creditors to miss their noon deadline.

According to a memo obtained by Metro from Newspaper Guild President Dan Gross to his union members — the papers’ journalists — the Teamsters union of the delivery drivers “hijacked and derailed” the closing process.

The collapse of the sale leads to another auction in the future, scheduled now for Sept. 23. According to the Guild memo, “one change from the auction held in April will be that bids at the new auction will contain no contingencies that would obligate the new owners to bargain contracts with the unions in order to close.”

In the next sale, Teamsters Local 628 President Joe Legaie hopes a local owner will step up and take the reins. “We believed in a local owner,” Legaie said. “They cared more about the community, had more of a tie to the community and cared more about charitable causes in the community.”

A spokesman for the current ownership group, Philadelphia Media Holdings, did not return a call for comment.

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