Food Lion settles labor chargesFood Lion Inc., one of the...

BUSINESS DIGEST

August 04, 1993

Food Lion settles labor charges

Food Lion Inc., one of the country's fastest-growing supermarket chains, has agreed to pay $16.2 million to settle charges that it violated child labor laws and failed to pay thousands of workers required overtime.

The settlement, which ended more than eight months of negotiations with the Labor Department, is the largest ever reached by the federal government in a wage-and-hour case involving a private employer.

Bond program aids small firms

Gov. William Donald Schaefer yesterday announced a new state-financed surety bonding program designed to help small and minority-owned companies compete for $500 million in construction contracts awarded annually by the Maryland Department of Transportation.

The program, financed with $10 million from the Department of Transportation to the Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority, expands a surety bonding plan that began in January. Surety bonds guarantee that a contractor's debts will be paid in case of default.

NAACP charges Hughes violations

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is accusing Hughes Aircraft Co. of violating federal guidelines that require government contractors to diversify their work forces and managements.

Officials of the group said they would present evidence at a news conference in Washington today that Hughes, which employs 55,000 people, has only two black vice presidents and that blacks are grossly underrepresented in its work force. The NAACP said yesterday, for example, that of the 1,000 people employed at the Hughes Network Systems facility in Germantown, 16 are black.

Editor Witty named publisher

Jonathan L. Witty, editor of Baltimore magazine, has been named to the additional post of publisher, according to ESS Ventures Inc., an investment and management company that owns Mid-Atlantic Country and Baltimore magazines.

Mr. Witty, who is former vice president and editor in chief of Baltimore-based Times Publishing Group Inc., will continue as vice president of ESS, the company said.

Business failures down nearly 10%

A reviving U.S. economy is the reason why the number of U.S. business failures fell nearly 10 percent in the first half of this year, according to Dun & Bradstreet Corp. This comes after a record number of businesses failed in the United States last year.

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