No details yet but according to a Newspaper Guild memo posted on Romenesko, the New York Times and its largest union have agreed to a voluntary buyout to cut costs. It’s vague on when an offer might be made or what kind of staff reduction the paper might have in mind, but the memo stresses that union and management are cooperating. The Guild told its members Terry Hayes, Times SVP of Operations and Labor, said the paper was agreeable to their proposal of a voluntary buyout agreeable to a buyout “because the Guild and its members ‘stepped up’ to help the newspaper” by agreeing to a temporary 5 percent paycut earlier this year. According to the Guild, Hayes also said the paychecks are “guaranteed” be be back to 100 percent on January 1, 2010, as promised in the agreement.
Some other cost-cutting ideas offered by the Guild: more flexible use of comp time; a four-day work week for five days of pay, paper reduction and help from its members for improving circulation.