Dutch pubcasters to cut presenter salaries


AMSTERDAM -- Television and radio presenters working for public broadcasters in the Netherlands are facing a considerable pay cut in 2008, the Dutch parliament ruled Friday.

A majority decided that these employees can not earn more than the prime minister of Holland, Jan Peter Balkenende, who collects about 171,000 euros a year.

For years salaries in the public media sector have escalated because of competition from commercial TV and radio stations in the Netherlands. In some cases annual salaries were reported as high as 360,000 euros, twice as much as the prime minister brings home.

The Socialistic Party, headed by Jasper van Dijk, proposed the cut, which was carried by most political parties.

Curiously enough, the biggest socialist party, PvdA, voted against the bill, while the PvdA is campaigning against overpaid CEOs in the private sector.