The Allbritton budget cutting that swept through Washington’s WJLA and Little Rock’s KATV hit the Heart of Dixie Friday, with 15 layoffs at WBMA/Birmingham. (Initially, station officials had said 20 jobs were cut, but the number was revised downward later in the day, amid the obvious confusion and emotion inside the station)
Reporter Melissa Lee and weather anchor Brian Peters were the only talent cut, according to the Birmingham News, which quoted ABC 33/40 General Manager Mike Murphy as saying “”It’s a very difficult time. We regret that it had to take place.”
The newspaper said Murphy cited decreasing advertising revenues as the major reason for the layoffs, but he declined to comment further.