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Page last updated at 04:42 GMT, Tuesday, 9 June 2009 05:42 UK

Boston Globe workers reject plan

The Boston Globe, file image
The newspaper has been by falling sales and rising costs

Workers at one of the oldest big-city newspapers in the US, the Boston Globe, have rejected the latest cost-cutting package proposed by their managers.

The Boston Newspaper Guild union voted down $10m (£6.2m) of pay and benefit cuts proposed by its parent company, the New York Times.

The Times says it will now have to impose a 23% pay cut on union members to keep the paper in circulation.

Both sides say they will keep talking to resolve the long-running dispute.

The Globe lost $50m last year and is expected to lose $85m this year.

'Multifaceted proposal'

Overall the Times wants the paper to save $20m.

Several of the paper's smaller unions had already agreed to make $10m of savings.

But the deal hinged on the paper's largest union, the Boston Newspaper Guild, agreeing to make up the other half.

The guild voted by 277 to 265 to reject the proposals, effectively killing the deal.

Robert Powers, spokesman for the paper's managers, said they were disappointed with the union's vote.

"As we have stated, the $10m in cost savings from this multifaceted proposal is essential to the Boston Globe's financial future," he said in a statement.

He added that there was "no financially viable alternative" other than to declare an impasse and propose a 23% pay cut for all guild members.

After the vote, guild president Daniel Totten said in a statement that the paper's owners "must do better than the offer that was presented".

He said the Globe was "vital to the life and culture of the region" and depended on the "fair treatment" of those who produced it.

The Boston Globe is the latest title to find itself squeezed by falling sales, rising costs and declining advertising revenues.

Traditional papers also face stiff competition from websites offering news content for free and other sites luring away classified advertisers.

At least 12,500 jobs have gone in US print journalism in the past two years.



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