BOSTON — Negotiations between unions at The Boston Globe and its owner, The New York Times Co., will continue after the company agreed to extend its midnight deadline for the newspapers' employees to make $20 million in concessions.
"Because there has been progress on reaching needed cost savings, The Boston Globe will extend the deadline for reaching complete agreements with its unions until midnight Sunday May 3," Globe spokesman Robert Powers said in a statement.
Leaders of the Boston Newspaper Guild, the Globe's largest union, asked for an extension of Friday's deadline after discovering what they called a $4.5 million accounting error. The Guild, which has been asked to come up with $10 million of the $20 million in concessions, said ownership mistakenly was counting the salaries and benefits of 80 people who have left their jobs at the Globe since the beginning of the year.
"We have given the New York Times Co. and Globe management proposals for deep cuts in our members' pay and benefits that we believe will save The Boston Globe," Daniel Totten, Guild president, said in a statement. "We are awaiting the company's response."
The concessions sought by the Times Co. could include pay cuts, a reduction in pension contributions and the elimination of lifetime job guarantees for some senior employees. Those guarantees state that the staffers cannot be let go without cause.
The Globe, like many newspapers, is struggling with declines in circulation and advertising. The Globe's operations lost $50 million last year and are projected to lose $85 million this year.
The Times Co. announced in April that it would close the Globe unless the concessions were met.
Negotiations between the Guild and the company are scheduled to resume Sunday, the union said.
Information from: The Boston Globe, http://www.boston.com