The national board of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) has given negotiators for the labor group's sound recording contract authorization to strike, the organization announced Saturday.

Since mid-August, AFTRA, which represents professional actors, dancers, singers, and broadcasters, has been in talks with the major labels on a new sound recordings contract.

The deal covers, according to the AFTRA release, singers, royalty and non-royalty artists, as well as announcers, actors, comedians, narrators and sound effects artists who work on recordings in all new and traditional media and all music formats, in addition to audiobooks, comedy albums and cast albums.

The current contract expires December 31.

Talks between AFTRA and Sony, UMG, Warner, EMI, Disney and their various subsidiary labels started in New York on August 15 and reconvened September 12 -16. An additional day of bargaining has been set for October 5.