At least three striking Daily News unions were still considering their new contracts Tuesday, but publisher Robert Maxwell said agreements with his future employees are "a done deal."

Lawyers for Maxwell and the newspaper's unions spent Monday trying to finalize the deals that would allow the British publisher to buy the paper.The nine unions must ratify their individual contracts by Wednesday, when Maxwell is to take over the News from the Chicago-based Tribune Co, or the paper will shut down.

By Monday evening, only two unions had ratified agreements, but four others were described as having tentative contracts in hand or nearly so.