Wednesday, May 7, 2008

McClatchy's Lexington Herald-Leader offers buyouts

McClatchy's Lexington Herald-Leader is offering buyouts to cut its work force by an estimated four percent due to decreasing advertising and circulation revenue, the newspaper reported Wednesday. Herald-Leader:
The Lexington Herald-Leader Co. is offering voluntary buyout packages to selected employees to reduce its work force in the face of declining revenue from advertising and circulation.

An estimated 4 percent of the newspaper's 385 full-time employees and managers are expected to be accepted by the company for the program, Publisher Timothy M. Kelly told employees Tuesday.

The actual total could be higher or lower than 15, depending on who applies.Employees in certain jobs, including advertising salespeople, will be ineligible for the program. Kelly declined to say how many employees would be offered the buyout.

Written details were distributed Tuesday. Benefits include up to 26 weeks' pay and extended health insurance coverage.

Employees will have until May 23 to accept or reject the offer. The company will then have until May 30 to decide which employees will leave. Their final day would be June 6. The paper also offered buyouts in 2000.

"This is a very difficult decision, not reached easily," Kelly told employees.

But he said the Herald-Leader is not immune from the economic realities that are affecting media companies nationwide, including many that have offered similar staff-reduction programs.

Howard "Champagne wishes and caviar dreams" Weaver was not available for comment.
Previous McClatchy layoffs and buyouts this spring:
Charlotte Observer offers buyouts
Raleigh News & Observer offers buyouts to 230 employees
Fort Worth Star Telegram cutting 15 positions
Miami Herald offering buyouts to veteran staff
Buyouts offered to 100 at McClatchy's Modesto Bee
Seattle Times to cut 200 jobs
Sacramento Bee offers buyouts to some employees