Friday 27 April 2018

'I've no problem with pay cuts', says RTE news anchor Bryan Dobson

RTE presenter Bryan Dobson
RTE presenter Bryan Dobson
Melanie Finn

Melanie Finn

RTE broadcaster Bryan Dobson has said he's happy to go along with "whatever is proposed or necessary", when it comes to possible salary sacrifices.

Director General Dee Forbes recently unveiled a raft of changes in a bid to cut costs at RTE, which has lost €100m in advertising revenue since 2008.

She indicated that she would consider future salary cuts as part of the restructuring, which is set to include an estimated 200 job losses - and the RTE news anchor, who earns just under €200k, said he fully supported Ms Forbes in whatever decision she came to.

"That's what the DG does. It's her job to chart the future of the organisation and to make good decisions, meaning that RTE will be here in 20, 30 years' time. That's what matters," he told the Herald.

"People in RTE across the board took salary cuts before. RTE moved quite quickly and they were also graded, so people who earn more lost more which I think was a good way to do it. Some of that has been restored and we'll see."

Dobson, who's been with the station 30 years this year, was included in a list released by RTE last year chronicling the top 10 earners.

Bryan Dobson and Lorraine Keane launch the 24th annual bike rally in aid of the Irish Youth Foundation, which will take place on Bloomsday
Bryan Dobson and Lorraine Keane launch the 24th annual bike rally in aid of the Irish Youth Foundation, which will take place on Bloomsday

He is the sixth best paid in RTE with an annual salary of €195,8016 in 2014.

He added how morale in RTE is generally "excellent".

"I think people are getting on with doing the job and keeping busy. I'm glad to have interesting work and where hopefully people appreciate what we do," he said.

"I suppose we all just get along with our job and keep at it. We've got programmes to produce every day.

"That's the thing about daily journalism - you really are busy every day. You're busy meeting deadlines and it's great.

"You do it every day and you start afresh the next day."

He recently marked 30 years with the organisation and said he has no plans on retiring anytime soon.

"There was no party. At 25 years, we have a dinner and they give you a little trophy. I don't know what you call it, to mark your 25 years," he said.

"I'll go on and on and on. I'll be wheeled out. It goes by very quickly, I tell you. The kids are grown up and they're gone."

He took time out from his busy schedule this week to help unveil details of this year's Brennan's Bloomsday bike rally in aid of the Irish Youth Foundation.

Joined by TV presenter Lorraine Keane, he certainly looked the part in a boater hat and an authentic Penny Farthing dating back from 1888, with this year's June 16 event expected to raise cash for a worthy cause.

"I read a little Joyce. I can't say hand on heart that I've read Ulysses cover to cover but I dip into it," he said.

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