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NBC Offers 140 Technical Employees Buyout Offer in Staff Reduction Plan

Times Staff Writer

NBC, still in the process of making staff reductions that it began two years ago to save money, on Wednesday offered 140 technical employees a buyout plan aimed at encouraging them to leave the company.

The proposal, described by a network spokesman as an “enhanced employee severance package,” was outlined to 140 members of the National Assn. of Broadcast Employees and Technicians.

Members of that union, which represents technicians, engineers, cameramen, editors and newswriters at NBC, struck the network for 17 weeks last year. About 1,000 NABET members work at NBC, a spokesman said.

The buyout plan is being offered only to NABET members working in NBC’s operations and technical services section, and acceptance of the plan is strictly voluntary, said the spokesman, Dom Giofre.

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“There’s no threat here,” he said. Employees offered the buyout plan have until Nov. 10 to let NBC know if they’ll accept it. They are being offered, among other things, a week’s pay for each year of service, and an “outplacement” service to help them find new jobs.

Those who accept the offer would leave at the end of the year. Those who don’t will continue working, Giofre added.

The technical staff cuts sought by NBC are separate from other cuts being made at NBC News, where, in a process begun early this year, about 50 full-time employees were told they will be let go by the end of the year. Sixty other temporary employees, hired to help cover the political campaigns and the Olympics, also are due to leave then.

NBC currently has a worldwide, full-time staff of 7,500 persons, Giofre said.

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