Fourteen people covered by the Guild will receive buyouts, and three people who applied were denied. The Company said it received sufficient numbers to avoid layoffs at this time, though of course managers reserved their right to lay off staff if financial conditions worsen.
The numbers include six people in advertising, four people in editorial, three people in circulation and one person in IS&S. (We were told 12 exempt employees also got the buyout. Five workers in the press room were laid off when no one there accepted the buyout offer.)
The three Guild members who were denied the buyout all work in advertising.
Company officials said they do not intend to replace the 14 who leave. The three people were denied because the Company felt it would have to replace those people, managers said.
“We’re glad no one faces a possible layoff at this time,” said Guild President Tim O’Brien. “We’re sorry to see so many of our colleagues go, but glad they could do so with extra money and extended health insurance. We have always opposed layoffs, and we’re glad we have strong layoff language that encourages the Company to offer buyouts instead. The current proposal by Times Union management to weaken that language would hurt employees if future layoffs are ever considered.”
The employees take with them a wealth of knowledge and expertise. All together, the Company is losing 394.3 years of experience — or an average of more than 28 years per person.