October 2, 2012 in Business

Rosauers chief leads chamber of commerce

From Staff And Wire Reports
 

Jeff Philipps, president and CEO of Rosauers Supermarkets Inc., is the incoming chairman of Greater Spokane Incorporated, the region’s chamber of commerce.

“I’m eager to continue the momentum we’ve created in the past year,” Philipps said in a news release from GSI.

Philipps leads a board of trustees that has identified five projects to focus on in the coming year: aerospace business recruitment; advocating for next-generation KC-46A tankers to be based at Fairchild Air Force Base and protecting the base from encroachment; continuing to develop the Academic Health Science Center at Riverpoint; exploring creation of a port district; and securing funding for continued construction of the North Spokane Corridor.

Michael Senske, president and CEO of Pearson Packaging Systems, was named chairman-elect.

American Express to pay $112.5 million after probe

WASHINGTON – American Express Co. is paying $112.5 million in refunds and fines to settle regulators’ accusations that it charged unlawful late fees and deceived customers to pressure them to pay off old debts or buy extra credit card services.

The company agreed to the settlements announced Monday by four federal agencies, including the Federal Reserve and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

American Express is refunding $85 million to about 250,000 customers and is paying $27.5 million in civil fines.

The agencies said American Express violated federal laws prohibiting deceptive practices by using false statements to get customers to settle old debts. The regulators say that included falsely telling customers that if they agreed to settlements to partially pay off their debts, the remaining balance would be forgiven. The violations were said to have occurred from 2003 to this past spring.

American Express also charged late fees on some credit cards based on a percentage of the debt owed, a violation of a 2009 law prohibiting certain credit card practices, the regulators said.

The company said most of the $85 million in refunds is related to late fees and debt collection practices. Customers entitled to refunds will be notified.

Honda recalls Accords to replace faulty hoses

DETROIT – Honda is recalling 600,000 Accord midsize cars in the U.S. and Canada to fix a faulty power steering hose that can leak fluid and cause a fire.

The recall affects Accords with V-6 engines from the 2003 through 2007 model years. Honda has a report of one fire but no injuries or crashes.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said in a posting on its website during the weekend that the Accord’s power steering hose can deteriorate with prolonged exposure to engine heat.

Honda will replace the hoses for free, but it won’t have the parts available until early next year. Any owner who suspects a leak should take their car to a dealer for inspection, Honda spokesman Ed Miller said Monday.

CenturyLink strike OK’d if contract talks fail

DENVER – CenturyLink workers in 13 states in the West and Midwest are authorizing a strike if union leaders and the telecommunications company can’t reach a contract agreement.

The Communications Workers of America said Monday that more than 88 percent of those voting backed the action.

The union and Monroe, La.-based CenturyLink are trying to reach a new contract for 13,000 employees before the current contract expires Saturday night. The employees include customer service agents, network technicians and Internet support workers.

The workers include those in Washington, Idaho and Oregon. Montana workers are negotiating a separate contract.


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