The AGERPRES National News Agency is not yet in the situation of laying employees off, support is being sought for fully covering the wages until the end of the year, but the organisational chart of the institution can be rethought, AGERPRES Managing Director Claudia Nicolae stated on Wednesday in the hearings of the Culture Committee of the Chamber of Deputies.
"Currently, the main issue is represented by the 15 percent increment which AGERPRES employees receive as of November. This increment was granted implicitly in November and December and, this year, in the budget chapter, it wasn't ensured for the entire year. It is one of the issues (...) and where all the discussions in the media, which have a direct cause started from. In terms of wages, just like all the public institutions, indeed, the funding for all 12 months is not ensured. Therefore, as the manager, in March, I believed it is necessary to rethink the institution's organisational chart, which has been operating ever since AGERPRES had 400-450 employees," Managing Director Claudia Nicolae said.
"My proposal - because, in the end, the Board of Directors is a majority and decides the path to follow - was that we aren't yet in the situation of laying people off, we will further try to seek support in view of fully covering the wages until the end of the year, but the organisational chart can be rethought, an outline of the organisational chart. This is where the main complaints started from, because it is not easy for someone to lose even that part of the leadership entitlement," Claudia Nicolae stated.
According to AGERPRES Managing Director Nicolae, in May, the institution had 292 employees on the payroll, of which 33 leadership positions, eight directors, ten news desks and four directorates.
"I believed that it was organised more horizontally than vertically, which, in the meantime, led to a lack of operating personnel, the editors in the field who produce the necessary news to fulfill the mission of the institution," the AGERPRES Managing Director pointed out.
She explained that there were proposals in the Board of Directors "to give up the seconded staff and the three pensioners in the institution who accumulate the pension with the AGERPRES salary."
"The seconded staff and those who accumulate the pension with the salary are on operating positions - county correspondents, without whom the institution would have a big problem in terms of covering the information, because it will not be possible for the other correspondents who remain in the country to cover these counties, too," Claudia Nicolae explained.
The chair of the Culture Committee, Liberal Gigel Stirbu, assured her of the entire support.
"She came to explain us that she wants the re-organisation of the institution, she doesn't want to layoff people, but, on the other hand, some people will lose their leadership positions. We assured her of all our support, we said that if she wants, we can offer her, at any time, with great pleasure, our support," Stirbu stated.