RTÉ staff earning over €40,000 may face pay cuts under proposals being considered at talks to save €60m.
It is understood that the outline of a 12 month deal that includes tiered wage reductions is being negotiated by management and the Group of Unions at the station.
Sources said the proposals that have not been signed off aim to protect the lower paid. Unions are insisting on an agreement that would mean pay would be restored at a later date.
They said the proposal is being seen as a “sticking plaster solution” until the troubled station’s future funding becomes clearer after a new government is in place.
The proposals are a work in progress and have not been agreed, but talks continued until close to midnight on Tuesday night.
The station sought to freeze staff increments last month but the unions including Siptu, the NUJ, Unite, Connect and the RTÉ Managers Association rejected the proposal.
RTÉ previously announced plans to reduce its costs by €60m over three years that included a voluntary redundancy plan to reduce numbers by 200 this year.
They included 15pc cuts to fees paid to top on-air presenters and a 10pc reduction in pay for the executive board. In addition, the board of RTÉ is waiving its fees.
It said it would consult with staff and unions on a number of initiatives “to include pay freeze, tiered pay reductions, review of benefits and work practice reforms”.
At the time, director general Dee Forbes said there is a future for public service media in Ireland but RTÉ cannot carry out its role unless the government “fixes the TV licence system”.
The station highlighted that Ireland has one of the highest licence fee evasion rates in Europe, which results in the loss of €25m in public funding every year.
It said there was a further loss of €20m due to households viewing its content on the RTE player without paying the licence fee.
Plans to sell off the RTE Guide and move Lyric FM from Limerick to Cork were suspended pending a report on the future of public broadcasting this year.
The government also agreed to give the station €50m over five years.
A spokesperson for RTÉ said discussions are ongoing and it would “not be commenting at this time”.