Since January 2007, as the shrinking of our newsrooms continued apace, some 2,700 journalists accepted buyouts and moved on. Here is a list of the financial terms of a sampling of those buyouts.

Bradenton Herald (Florida)

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service; maximum of twenty-six weeks’ pay

Health care: Health care subsidized for three months

The Buffalo News

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service, for up to one year; minimum offer starts at about $60,000

Health care: No health benefits


The Cincinnati Enquirer

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service for a maximum of fifty-two weeks

Health care: Health benefits for a maximum of fifty-two weeks

Daily News (New York)

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service; maximum of fifty-two weeks’ pay

Health care: Six months of health care

Los Angeles Times

Payment: One week of pay for every six months of service, for up to fifty-two weeks

Health care: The most recent offer provided medical coverage for that time span

The Modesto Bee

Payment: Two weeks of pay for each year of service; minimum of ten weeks and maximum of forty weeks of pay

Health care: Health benefits covered until December 2008




The New York Times

Payment: Three weeks of pay per year (up to 104 weeks) for employees with at least eleven years of service; flat amount (between fifteen and thirty weeks of pay) for employees with fewer than eleven years

Health care: Eight months of health coverage for employees with eleven years of service; four months of health insurance for employees with fewer than eleven years




The News Tribune (Washington)

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service up to thirteen years

Health care: Three months medical at the employee rate; employee can buy a full year of medical by foregoing two weeks’ severance

Other: Outplacement counseling by a private firm

The Oklahoman

Payment: “Early retirement package” offers one year base pay

Health care: Cobra options available at no increase for three months; offered to two groups—employees fifty-five years old or older (must have worked at least fifteen years or more) and those sixty years old (must have worked five to fifteen years)

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service; maximum of forty weeks of pay

Health care: Money (and any left-over vacation) could be placed directly into an IRA

The Providence Journal

Payment: For each year of service through twenty years, 1.25 weeks of pay

Health care: For each year of service totaling more than twenty years, 2.5 weeks of pay; maximum of thirty-five weeks’ pay

The Sacramento Bee

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service; maximum of forty weeks’ pay

The San Diego Union-Tribune

Payment: Two weeks of pay for each year of continuous service for up to one year, provided employee has worked at least five years

Health care: Option to continue medical benefits for a period of time, based on length of service

The Star-Ledger (New Jersey)

Payment: One year’s salary

Health care: Health benefits for one year

The Sun (Baltimore)

Payment: One week of pay for every six months of service; minimum of six weeks and maximum of fifty-two weeks of pay

Times Union (Albany)

Payment: Two weeks of pay for every year of service, up to one year’s salary; employees with at least twenty, thirty, or forty years of service eligible for additional lump sums of $11,000, $22,000, and $33,000 respectively

Health care: One to three years of health insurance based on service, minus co-pay

The Wall Street Journal

Payment: “Early retirement package” offered to longtime senior reporters and editors: one-and-a-half times salary

Health care: Benefits until eligible for Medicare or get new job


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Megan McGinley is an intern at CJR.