Granite Broadcasting once again became “the Grinch” and laid off staff at WKBW-TV in Buffalo, New York a month before Christmas. Six workers were notified about their jobs no longer being in existence. No advanced notice was made with no chance to move elsewhere within the TV station or broadcast group.
This is the latest shameful display by a company that has made “the nuclear option” fashionable. In recent years, Granite has shut down TV news departments and laid off staff without hesitation or regret. They’ve also played hardball with its unionized staff, holding up negotiations with the expressed purpose of busting the union.
There are some positive signs. With layoffs, there is a chance Granite may be looking at a sale next year. Granite Broadcasting is aa wholly owned subsidiary of Silver Point Capital, a hedge fund based in Greenwich, Connecticut.
With the minimum ownership rule coming up, the window of opportunity may be opening for a “knight in shinning armor” to come in and save Channel 7. Will it happen, who knows. One thing is certain, any change is better than what is in place right now.