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Court Rules That KPIX Did Not Target Older Reporters for Layoffs

An appeals court in San Francisco today ruled in favor of KPIX in the station’s long-simmering legal battle with two former reporters.

After having their age discrimination lawsuit against the CBS O&O dismissed at the beginning of last year, Bill Schechner and John Lobertini have continued to fight, but their case suffered a significant blow as the appeals court concluded that the pair of former KPIX reporters failed to show enough evidence that the station singled out their age as the reason for laying them off in 2008.

Schechner was 66 and Lobertini 47 when they, along with three other members of the KPIX news team, were let go, following a mandate from CBS that the station reduce its annual budget by ten percent.

“This case demonstrates that reduced advertising revenues, whether caused by competition from online news outlets or our nation’s economic downturn, have taken a significant toll on local television news stations,” the judge writes in the decision (below).  “Schechner and Lobertini were performing their jobs well when KPIX laid them off.”

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