CBS 2 staff asked to pay bill

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Posted by on August 07, 2008 at 07:28:27:

In Reply to: CBS 2 cost-cutting affects Joe Ahern posted by on August 06, 2008 at 07:49:07:

Check, please

Staffers forced to pick up tab for Joe Ahern's birthday bash

Remember the little item here Wednesday about Joe Ahern and the $5,000 lunch?

Well, it gets even better.

It turns out the event June 9 at Alex Dana's trendy Rosebud Prime in the Loop was a party to honor the president and general manager of CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2 on his 63rd birthday.

Among the assembled multitude were members of Ahern's family, senior Channel 2 managers, on-air talent and other friends, according to several who attended.

But when it came time for Ahern to seek reimbursement from CBS, Channel 2 controller Ron Damron kicked it back.

Instead of Ahern picking up the tab himself, Damron went to each of Ahern's department heads and managers to demand that they cover the cost of the birthday bash.

Most were ordered to hand over personal checks "in the area of $100 or more," one source said.

A spokeswoman for Ahern again had no comment on the matter.

But Ahern's extravagant party and reports of the marble shower installed in the private bathroom of his new office seem at odds with draconian cost-cutting at CBS.

Following mass layoffs and other cutbacks, Channel 2 dropped plans to send chief correspondent Jay Levine to cover the Olympics in Beijing and top news anchor Rob Johnson to cover the conventions.


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