Media General CEO Marshall Morton announced to staff this week that the company is requiring its employees to take 15 furlough days before the end of the year.
“In order to reach our cash flow goal for the year, which has again been lowered from our initial expectations, we must cut expenses in the second half of the year,” writes Morton in a memo to staff. “One of the fastest ways to flow expense savings to the bottom line, without broad-based permanent layoffs, is a furlough program – something we had hoped we would not need to do this year.”
Media General owns 18 TV stations across the country, including WJAR in Providence, Rhode Island and WFLA in Tampa, Florida; as well as 21 daily newspapers. Mr. Morton has served as its President and Chief Executive Officer since July 2005. He was previously the Company’s Chief Financial Officer from 1989 until July 2005, its Senior Vice President from 1989 to 2001 and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors from 2001 to July 2005. Last year, Mr. Morton made over $1.9 million dollars in salary and other compensation. (Source Forbes.com)
Other financial information discovered in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing disclosure include some other shocking, but not surprising findings.
- George L. Mahoney, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary took home over $1.2 million dollars last year.
- John A. Schauss, Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer took home just under $1 million.
- J. Stewart Bryan, Chairman of the Board took home just over a cool $2 million dollars.
The company also contributed to the National Association of Broadcasters in lobbying Congress. The NAB spent $3.8 million in the first quarter to lobby the federal government on the use of wireless spectrum for television broadcasts and rules governing contract talks between cable operators and television broadcasters, among other issues. (Source AP, Forbes.com)
Last week, Media General announced that it expected to beat it’s 2nd quarter revenue of $167.1 million, just slightly above the consensus Wall Street estimate of $166 million. Despite all that, and with all the money Media General dished out during the last few years to its corporate board members, it’s hard to believe that they can plead poverty to their own workers by forcing them to take unpaid leave, many who have been taking a beating on their paychecks and benefits.