New owners lay off 11 at Fox 23
ALBANY The new owner of WXXA-TV (Fox 23) launched a restructuring campaign at the television station Wednesday, including 11 layoffs.
Newport Television, which is based in Kansas City, pushed a series of job cuts throughout its network, which includes the 56 stations it acquired in March from Clear Channel Television. A Newport spokeswoman said the company is reducing its 2,100-person workforce by 7.5 percent, or about 158.
Although Newport is reducing Fox 23’s staff, it is not cutting any station newscasts. Newport believes the staff cuts are necessary to maintain Fox 23’s competitiveness, said Lucy Neugart, a spokeswoman for Newport, the nation’s 14th largest television station group.
“This was a difficult but necessary step to ensure that each station has the right team to compete over the long-term,” Newport said in a statement. “We are excited about the strengths of each of these stations, and we are committed to providing the strategic and financial resources they need to deliver the absolute best programming to their viewers and to grow and improve our news product.”
The cuts came less than a month after Newport installed a new general manager at WXXA, with Billy Sally, who held the same position at WFFF-TV and WVNY-TV in Burlington, Vt., replacing Sally Stamp.