DC Mayor vetos ‘living wage’ bill; council to consider override
New York — Washington, D.C., Mayor Vincent Gray vetoed a controversial bill that would have required Wal-Mart Stores and other large retailers to pay their employees at least $12.50 an hour. The bill applied only to retailers with stores of 75,000 sq. ft. or larger, at least $1 billion in annual sales and non-unionized workforces.
The D.C. Council approved the bill, officially called the Large Retailer Accountability Act but more commonly called the “living wage” bill, in July on an 8-5 vote, one short of a veto-proof majority. It will consider overriding the veto, as early on Tuesday.
The mayor announced his veto a letter to the council chairman, and said he would seek a minimum-wage hike for all employers, not just large retailers.
In the letter, Gray said the bill was “not a true living-wage bill, because it would raise the minimum wage only for a small fraction of the District’s workforce.” He added the bill is a “job-killer,” citing threats from Wal-Mart and other retailers that they will not locate to the city if the bill becomes law.
Wal-Mart had made known its intent that it would abandon plans for three of the six stores it has planned for the D.C. area if the bill became law.
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Destination Maternity relocating headquarters from Philly to Jersey
Philadelphia — Destination Maternity Corp. plans to relocate its corporate headquarters and distribution center from Philadelphia, to southern New Jersey.
The company’s corporate office operations (which are currently split between its headquarters at North 5th Street in Philadelphia and its offices in the Philadelphia Navy Yard) will move twelve miles from the current 5th Street headquarters facility to a completely renovated 74,000-sq. ft. building in Moorestown, New Jersey. The chain expects the move to occur in fall 2014.
"Given our growth over time and our corporate goals, we determined that in order to reach our full potential as the global leader in the maternity apparel business, we needed to expand and improve our office facilities and our distribution center facilities,” said Destination Maternity CEO Ed Krell. “The headquarters move will allow us to create a more modern, spacious, bright and open office environment for our headquarters team members, which promotes the kind of collaborative teamwork, creativity and problem solving across all brands and functional areas, which is so critical to our continued growth and success. The distribution center move will provide us with a new, build-to-suit, state-of-the-art facility with greater space, a more efficient single-story layout and new material handling equipment to increase the capacity and efficiency of our distribution operations.”
Bi-Lo to buy 22 Piggly Wiggly stores; Harris Teeter to buy six
New York — In separate announcements on Thursday, Bi-Lo Holdings and Harris Teeter on Thursday announced plans to acquire select Piggly Wiggly-branded stores.
Bi-Lo said it has entered into a definitive agreement with Piggly Wiggly Carolina Company to acquire 22 Piggly Wiggly stores in South Carolina and coastal Georgia.
Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
"We look forward to welcoming these new associates to the Bi-Lo Holdings family and to building on the strength of these stores," stated Randall Onstead, president and CEO of Bi-Lo Holdings. "We will continue to fine-tune our company and network of stores so that we can reinvest in what matters most for our customers — the freshest foods, the best deals and really connecting to their neighborhoods."
The transaction is expected to close in fourth quarter 2013. Upon completion of the transaction, the acquired stores will be rebranded under the Bi-Lo banner name.
Harris Teeter Supermarkets said that its operating subsidiary, Harris Teeter, has entered into an agreement with Greenbax Enterprises, Inc. (“Piggly Wiggly”) to purchase six Piggly Wiggly store locations and one future store location in the Charleston, S.C., area.
The transaction is expected to be completed in October 2013.
Harris Teeter plans to close the acquired stores for three to four days for stocking and training of employees.
Thomas W. Dickson, chairman of the board, and CEO stated: “These store locations and the dedicated associates who work in them make this an especially attractive transaction for Harris Teeter. We plan to remodel and expand a number of these locations to create brand new Harris Teeter stores to serve our customers.”
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