According to documents filed yesterday in bankruptcy court, the Tribune Company felt it would face protracted litigation from former VP & CEO Randy Michaels if it chose to contest his wrongful 2010 termination and bonus-due claims. (He was asked to resign last fall after allegations of workplace impropriety.) As a result, the company has decided to cough up $657,000 of the $900,000 he sought, plus $50,000 in legal expenses.
It’s not quite a done dunce-deal, as the bankruptcy court must still approve the settlement agreement. But it is more bad news for the corporate image of the LA Times parent; although layoffs at the paper have continued to occur since Michaels departed in a cloud of controversy, he gets to collect the equivalent of six plus years in star reporter salary.
There are a lot of different ways to spin this. But for FishbowlLA, Michaels’ to-be-approved success connects to GE paying no income tax on $14 billion in profits and O.J. Simpson being declared innocent.
It is arguably all about the level of litigants one can afford.
[Photo courtesy WBEZ.org]