The Capital Region’s largest daily newspaper has accepted buyout applications from 25 employees, including eight in the newsroom, its publisher said today.
Looking to trim expenses in the face of an economic downturn and heightened competition for advertising dollars, the Times Union in May offered buyout packages for 30 workers. The newspaper received that many applications from workers, but management rejected five of them.
Publisher Mark Aldam said the newspaper would have had to replace those five employees who were denied buyouts with new hires, and “it didn’t make economic sense.” However, the newspaper opted to lay off five pressmen.
Fourteen of the buyouts are for members of Newspaper Guild of Albany Local 31034, Aldam said. Tim O’Brien, who heads the union that represents half of the Times Union’s work force of approximately 500, did not immediately return calls.
Aldam said the Times Union will not curtail any of its news coverage because of the buyouts.
A growing number of area media companies have also moved this month to cut their payrolls. The Daily Gazette laid off six workers, WXXA-TV (Fox 23) in Albany laid off 11 and WMHT Educational Communications in East Greenbush laid off 10.