N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

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N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

Unread postby Gannettoid » Mon Jul 27, 2009 9:32 am

The New York Times published a story Sunday that focused on Gannett's cutting of its severance package for former employees. The story pointed out that, "Gannett, a largely nonunion company, is under no obligation to make severance or any other payments to most of the people it lays off, and it is not alone in looking for ways to spend less on employees as it weathers the downturn."

The story also quoted Andrew Stettner, the deputy director of the National Employment Law Project, who called Gannett's severance program "pretty rare." Several major publishers, including the Tribune Company, the McClatchy Company and the Times Company, said they have never used a program like Gannett's and instead pay standard severance.

STORY: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/27/business/media/27gannett.html?_r=2&ref=media

Share your story here. Add to the voices of the former Arizona Republic workers who were quoted in the story.

Also, the first week, Total Management Solutions had a glitch that cited the payment were from "Mohawk Carpet Co.," the second week, payments were made at least a day late. How has your experience with TMS been?
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby Guest » Mon Jul 27, 2009 4:24 pm

Once again Gannett has found a way for someone else to bear what should be the company responsibility. GCI laid off 1400+ workers as excess, got the cash strapped states to subsidise the 'unseverance package", forced the abused ex-employees to file weekly to two entities for thier money and then if the ex-employee should find some work or screw up and not report in, Gannett is off the hook.
They then turn around and are happy to report there 2nd qtr profits are up. Before the apologists write in, they should remember how well this company has been managed over the past two years and the fact that the self-serving Board of Directors choose to rewards those incompetents with a cash bonus paid for by the number of people who have been lost to make the happy 2nd qtr announcement.
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby Guest » Mon Jul 27, 2009 7:56 pm

"The company said it did not know how much it would save, compared with paying severance..."
Are you effin' kidding me?

"And laid-off employees with more than 26 years’ service — Gannett said it did not know how many there were..."
If you don't know, you're morons.

What a slap in the face to everyone who was laid off. "Gee, we don't know how much we're saving by giving you this crappy 'transitional pay' instead of severance." Are they just crossing their fingers and hoping it was worth whatever they paid TMS to handle this for them?

Gannettoid, you should ask Robin Pence why they don't know the answers to those two questions. They should know exactly how many 26+ years workers were let go, and they should have a rough estimate of how much this transitional pay deal is going to save them; they should know exactly how much they would have spent on 1-week-per-year severance.
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby PAPRBOY » Mon Jul 27, 2009 8:58 pm

Gannett doesn't do anything without knowing what it will cost. They have to know what the total cost of the layoffs is. If they don't know the cost, how would they know how much they are saving? And if they aren't saving anything what's the point of a layoff? So yeah, they know to the penny.

Also at my site I know that every name that is selected to be laid off is sent off to corporate to look at first. I'm convinced that they look at the ratio of older to younger workers to avoid age discrimination lawsuits.
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby pterodactyl » Mon Jul 27, 2009 10:02 pm

PAPRBOY is probably right. I say probably because the way that they've run down a lot of great newspapers, it's possible they weren't sharp enough to do the math.
I'm one of those long termers the NYT talks about. In my shop the ratio was 5 veterans and one young writer who was basically a sacrificial lamb.
The ones who were cut loose had more than 100 years experience, while the kid had less than one.
Somebody will get a ring for disembowlng a great newspaper.
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby az pressman » Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:28 pm

i believe it when gannett says they don't know what they are saving.

a couple of examples

ex-employee A has a part time job so is not eligible for unemployment, gannett doesn't know about said part time gig. cha ching more savings then they thought.

ex-employee B is eligible for unemployment so gannett saves what they thought, cha ching

ex-employee C is eligible for unemployment but gets a new job 6 weeks later, gannett saves more then they thought, cha ching

so i believe what they say (this time) but they should have a minimum estimate at the very least otherwise they are idiots


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Let's get this straight

Unread postby Guest » Thu Jul 30, 2009 8:46 am

Gannett outsources "transitional" pay to Total Management Systems. They outsource processing to a third, unnamed, company and that third company is late in making payments. WTF is going on here? Is this third company also responsible for the Mohawk Carpet thing? And how many different companies in different parts of India are going to end up with our banking information? It's back to WTF is going on here?
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby TheManNowDog » Sat Aug 01, 2009 7:47 pm

don't forget:

Ex-employee D is out of town burying his mother on Monday through Thursday, then on Friday, a lighting storm knocks off his power before he can verify his eligibility for unemployment to TMS, thus disqualifying him from further sub-pay payments. CHA-CHING. :cry:
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI

Unread postby formerohioemp » Mon Aug 03, 2009 9:22 am

So far unemployment doesn't understand transitional pay and hasn't given a waiting week because I am receiving some monetary payment so after almost a month, I am still waiting on unemployment to start but have received a payment of TMS' part. I still don't see how they will coincide so that I actually receive my full severance pay for years served. Thank goodness I only have a few...feel bad for those that were employed a long time and have to continually go through this process.
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

Unread postby Guest » Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:58 am

Every week when you file unemployment you are asked the question about income from the prior week. If you answer yes then your weekly unemployement is denied, TMS should still pay but you aren't getting the full weekly salary as stated by the HR reps at the final meeting. If you say no then you get the DES payment and TMS for your old weekly salary.
Are we lying when we answer or just doing as we were instructed? It seems to me this payment method makes us liable if DES wants to challenge our right to benefits and if denied will we have to pay them back or will TMS start paying all of our old weekly salary?
I would like to know if any other laid off ex-employees has more info on this?
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

Unread postby Guest » Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:22 am

Last Friday I contacted TMS for the 4th time about the difference of $24 between my actual UI benefit and the estimated UI benefit on the TMS paperwork. I even sent them a pdf of the statement from NJ umemployment stating my actual benefit which is as I said above $24 less than the estimated by TMS on July 9th. Well, last week's phone call finally netted their answer. That the $25 we all receive from the Feds for every UI week is my difference. In other words, Gannett will not be responsible for that $24! Is this legal? Can Gannett opt out of fullfilling the correct total of my base pay that they should be paying in the weekly TPP payment?
Has anyone else encountered this with TMS and Gannett? Please let me and others know. Thanks!
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

Unread postby beentheredonethat » Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:38 am

beautiful....I just faxed my UI declaration to TMS for the very same reason and approximately the same amount. I haven't heard back yet, but at least I'll be prepared for their response!
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

Unread postby JAFO » Sun Aug 23, 2009 7:43 am

This sounds like a breach of contract and the Federal Wage and Hour Bureau,IRS and maybe a Lawyer needs to get involved
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Re: N.Y. Times focuses on GCI's severance packages

Unread postby wondering » Sun Aug 23, 2009 9:47 am

Guest wrote:Last Friday I contacted TMS for the 4th time about the difference of $24 between my actual UI benefit and the estimated UI benefit on the TMS paperwork. I even sent them a pdf of the statement from NJ umemployment stating my actual benefit which is as I said above $24 less than the estimated by TMS on July 9th. Well, last week's phone call finally netted their answer. That the $25 we all receive from the Feds for every UI week is my difference. In other words, Gannett will not be responsible for that $24! Is this legal? Can Gannett opt out of fullfilling the correct total of my base pay that they should be paying in the weekly TPP payment?
Has anyone else encountered this with TMS and Gannett? Please let me and others know. Thanks!


This is at the top of the UI Benefits Online page; the link is:

https://ui.labor.state.ny.us/UBC/home.do?FF_LOCALE=1

Additional $25 weekly payment to unemployment recipients
The additional $25 weekly payment, known as Federal Additional Compensation (FAC), is being made to unemployment recipients. The $25 payment is being made at the same time as the regular unemployment payment. Claimants who have elected to have federal tax withheld from their unemployment benefits, will receive $22.50. No additional action will be necessary to receive the FAC payments.
The last week for which FAC payments can be made is the week ending July 4, 2010.
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