So Long, and Thanks for All the Fishwrap: Today's the Last Day for Many Chronicle Vets; 80 Staff Buyouts Confirmed and 100 Or More Anticipated
Hearst Corporation had expressed a desire to shed 150 union workers but "there's a chance they won't have to lay anyone off," noted Hall.
As noted in an earlier SF Weekly story, an ultimatum from the paper's pension plan -- unrelated to the recent hardball union negotiating and threats to shutter the Chron -- has spurred many of the paper's vets to take the buyout. Workers not handing in their badges by the end of the month will be ineligible for a lump sum pension payment and would have the funds deferred until their 65th birthdays.
"I couldn't not take the offer. The money wasn't the only issue, but it certainly was a factor," said departing Chron fashion editor Sylvia Rubin, a 31-year employee -- who added that today is the last day for "a lot of veteran reporters whose names you know."
One of those names: Carl T. Hall.
"I am applying for the paper's generous offer," he confirmed, with an ironic lilt in his voice. "I haven't done it yet. I will march in with a colleague with our arms locked in a suicide pact. And if either of us gets weak at the knees..." His voice trailed off.
Hall cleared his throat. "I have a bright future in the labor movement."