Gannett Co.'s USA Today will impose an unpaid leave for about 1,500 employees before July, in order to reduce cost and counter advertising and circulation sales downturn, according to a memo to staff, Bloomberg reported.
According to the publisher, David Hunke, in the memo, a pay halt started in February 2009 will be extended by at least 90 days.
"National advertising revenues in general were still down from the previous year as were paid advertising pages at USA Today. Circulation sales continued to be lower in the fourth quarter," added Hunke.
Gannett announced in December that most employees at local papers would be required to take five-day unpaid leave this quarter, originally excluding these at USA Today. However, most USA Today staff had to take two-week unpaid leave last year as part of a plan mandated by Gannett.
The memo was confirmed by Ed Cassidy, a spokesman for USA Today, Bloomberg reported.
"The title's nearly 1,500 employees must take a one-week furlough between Feb. 28 and July 3," Cassidy said Thursday, according to an Associated Press article posted on W Top.