Staffers at Tampa ABC affiliate WFTS-Ch. 28 will lose one week of pay, as owner E.W. Scripps Co. implements a similar salary reduction at all 10 of its TV stations across the country.
In exchange for the pay reduction, which will be spread out throughout June and July, employees will receive five additional paid days off to be taken between Monday and July 26.
The company took this step instead of implementing the furloughs seen at rival Gannett Co. and other companies to lessen the economic impact for employees, said WFTS general manager Rich Pegram.
"This way, an employee doesn't see half his biweekly paycheck gone at once," said Pegram, who added the pay cut would help Scripps avoid widespread layoffs. "We had every expectation that the second quarter would be a bounce-back period for us economically. But considering what's happened to the automotive sector this week, its obvious things will remain tough for the rest of the year."
Last week, Scripps announced revenue from the company's TV stations dropped 20 percent in the first quarter of 2009 compared with a year earlier. Overall, the company announced first-quarter losses of $221 million, closing Denver's Rocky Mountain News newspaper in February