• Tribune Publishing: 7% of staff in newspapers taking buyouts

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    WASHINGTON, D.C.: Tribune Publishing said on Thursday (Friday in Manila) 7 percent of its staff had taken buyouts as it streamlines operations across its newspapers, which include the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune.

    The publishing group, spun off from the larger media conglomerate Tribune Co. last year, said in a regulatory filing it would set aside $55 million for severance and related costs for the job cuts.

    According to the Chicago Tribune, nearly 500 of the 7,000 eligible employees took a buyout at the newspaper group, which also includes the Baltimore Sun, Orlando Sentinel and several niche publications.

    There was no breakdown of cuts by newspaper but one report last month said 15 percent of Los Angeles Times staffers had accepted the offer.

    Employees who took the buyout get at least one week of pay for every year of employment up to 10 years, two weeks of pay for 11 to 20 years and three weeks for years 21 and beyond, with a cap at a year’s pay, according to the Chicago newspaper.

    The group has been struggling for direction since the split, amid speculation that it could sell off its prized Los Angeles daily or put the entire group up for sale.

    The company earlier this year bought the San Diego Union-Tribune and recently offered a $3 million loan to the parent of the Orange County Register newspaper which could be used in a bid for its assets. Such a sale could give the group a strong if not dominant position in the southern California region.

    AFP

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