Forced vacation use ordered at L.A. Times

More cost cutting: the same week that parent Tribune asked the bankruptcy judge to approve bonuses for 640 managers, Los Angeles Times employees received an email saying they will not accrue vacation for the rest of 2011. They also have to use up some of their banked vacation days, like it or not. Read the memo after the jump.

From: Thomson, Kathy K
Sent: Friday, September 02, 2011 10:30 AM
To: AllLosAngelesTimesEmployees
Subject: Vacation Accrual

Colleagues -

As we approach the end of the year, we’ve succeeded in providing our print and digital readers with the comprehensive and high quality news and information our community expects. We remain deeply committed to that goal and pursuing the promise of the digital future, but continue to experience financial pressure from the lagging economy and its effects on local and national advertising. Over the last few months, we have implemented many initiatives that have proven successful in allowing us to reach our financial targets and business goals, but the ongoing softness of the revenue picture required us to look closely at a number of other options. These have included, among other things, the departure of some of our colleagues, and as we head into the fourth quarter, we have identified additional means to reduce costs overall and meet our 2011 commitments.

As of October 2, 2011, we will put into action a temporary freeze of vacation accrual and mandate the use of vacation days. Given that many of you have more than two weeks of vacation already accrued and the holiday months are traditionally a season when time off is scheduled, our hope is that this will be manageable and not create undue difficulty.

Here are the details:

· Vacation accrual for full-time employees will temporarily freeze as of October 2, 2011 and resume on December 25, 2011, which is when the first pay period of 2012 begins.

· Full-time employees will be required to use accrued and unused vacation up to a maximum of 5 days between October 2, 2011 and December 24, 2011. The number of required days will be determined by an employee’s existing balance as of October 2, 2011 (e.g. an employee with 10.47 days accrued will be required to take the maximum of 5, while an employee with 3.45 days accrued will be required to take 3).

· Full-time employees will be required to schedule these vacation days with their supervisor prior to October 15, 2011. If no information is provided by the employee, the supervisor will select the required vacation days.

· Full-time employees hired on or after January 1, 2011 will be exempt from the temporary freeze and mandatory vacation.

Please contact either your HR Generalist or supervisor with any questions.

To schedule vacation days:

Salaried employees: use the “Time Off Tracking System” link on Timeslink

Hourly employees: use the Kronos Time and Attendance system

We appreciate your contribution towards achieving our goals. Thank you for your continued support.

Kathy


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