Wednesday, December 3, 2008

'Star-Tribune' Asks Unions for $20 Million in Cuts -- 'Survival at Stake'

The Star Tribune has asked its labor unions to agree to $20 million in cuts by mid-January to address the newspaper's long-term debt.

In a memo Tuesday to the company's 1,400 employees, chairman and publisher Chris Harte said "the survival of the company is at stake."

The $20 million would be in addition to $10 million in cuts the company said it has already started to implement. The company wants to reach an agreement on the cuts with union leadership, which represent about 900 contractual workers.

The Minneapolis newspaper has about $400 million in long-term debt, some of which executives hope lenders will forgive if the company makes some sacrifices.

Since 2007, the Star Tribune has made $50 million in cuts through attrition, layoffs, buyouts and other cost-cutting measures.

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