'Worried' staff fear for future as TV3 seeks to cut jobs
STAFF at TV3 were last night "concerned and worried" as the broadcaster joined RTE in cutting jobs.
Employees yesterday received an email announcing a voluntary redundancy scheme, offering three weeks' pay per year of service on top of statutory redundancy of two weeks from the State.
It is not known how many jobs the company is seeking to cut, and staff yesterday said it was the "first time anyone had heard about it".
Chief executive David McRedmond has insisted the company is not in financial difficulty and described the number of jobs it was attempting to slash as "not significant".
The company employs about 250 staff. He said it was "business as usual" and described the redundancy deal as "managing payroll prudently".
RTE is attempting to slash 70 jobs by offering a package of six weeks' pay per year of service capped at two-and-a-half years' salary.
This could mean some workers could walk away with €150,000 based on an average wage of €61,000.
Under the voluntary scheme at TV3, an employee with five years' service who is paid €700 per week, or €35,000 per annum, would get €17,500.
The email announcing the scheme blamed "stock market falls in recent days and sluggish consumer sales this summer" as part of the reason for seeking the redundancies.
One TV3 staff member said: "There is a feeling of concern and worry about the future of the company. It's three years since the last round of redundancies, so it's hard to believe we're already back there again."
Mr McRedmond said the station had no immediate plans to enforce redundancies.
Meanwhile, local TV station City Channel has said it is in talks to secure further investment in the company amid a major "structural review" -- but has denied reports it was to suspend its operations or cease broadcasting.
Chief executive David Harvey last night insisted the broadcaster's three channels -- in Dublin, Galway and the south -- would remain on air as the company "examined a number of options for the business and its future".