Patriot Coal Ruling



A bankrupt coal producer has a judge's go-ahead to significantly cut health care and pension benefits to thousands of workers and retirees in hopes of regaining its financial footing.
 
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kathy Surratt-States on Wednesday approved of Patriot Coal's request to impose wage and benefit cuts by throwing out its collective-bargaining agreements with the United Mine Workers of America.
 
St. Louis-based Patriot sought bankruptcy protection last summer to address labor obligations it said have grown unsustainable. The Peabody Energy Corp. spinoff has said it would have to spend $1.6 billion to cover the health care costs, putting it at risk of liquidation.
 
The union has called the proposed cuts immoral and unfair.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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