Thursday 22 March 2018

RTE reveals salary cuts of big names

Marian Finucane and Eamon Dunphy
Marian Finucane and Eamon Dunphy
Jason O'Brien

Jason O'Brien

RTE has released individual wage cuts agreed with some of its biggest names as it details how it reduced the total paid to its 'Top 10' by 30pc.

Figures published this evening show that Ryan Tubridy is now earning €495,000, which RTE says is a 32pc reduction against what he was earning for his best contract - which was in 2011.

Marian Finucane has taken an even larger hit. Her latest deal sees her earn €295,000 - but this is a 48pc fall on her highest deal in 2008.

Miriam O'Callaghan is now earning €211,167, a drop of of 36pc against her highest earnings which were in 2010.

In 2008 RTE paid €4.45m in fees to the10 highest-paid presenters.

Based on the latest negotiated rates, the projected fees of the highest paid presenters in 2013 is expected to be in the region of €3m, which is a reduction of in excess of 30pc compared to 2008 level, the station said.

Despite the cuts, all those detailed continue to earn in excess of €100,000 per annum - with some earning many multiples of that. The current television licence fee is €160.

PAT Kenny remains the top paid star at RTE earning fees of €630,000 a-year.

The fees paid to Prime Time and Radio One presenter, whose contract is up for renewal this year, are down 34pc on their peak of €950,000 in 2008

Joe Duffy, whose Liveline show is a major ratings puller for the broadcaster, has agreed a contract worth €300,000 a year. This is a 27pc fall on his 2008 fee.

Eamon Dunphy has seen a bigger fall-off - his latest deal is worth €106,000 to him but that is 67pc less than his earnings in 2008, although he was doing more radio work at that time.

Others in the top 10 list include radio host Colm Hayes on €170,000 (a 21pc drop on 2009), television host Brendan O'Connor on €158,400 (31pc down on 2011) and commentator George Hamilton on €168,350 (a 23pc drop on 2008).

RTE Director General, Noel Curran, said in a statement: “Today’s release sees RTÉ achieve our commitment. The reductions come as part of a comprehensive programme of reform across the organisation, with increased levels of efficiency and resourcefulness at its core. RTÉ, like the general public, continues to hugely value the contribution our presenters make to our public service.”

RTE added that the total Top 10 presenter payments represents just over 1pc of RTE’s operating costs in 2012 and approximately 2pc of personnel related operating costs. RTÉ has reduced its 2012 operating cost levels by over €100m compared to 2008 levels, which is a reduction of 24pc.

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