January 10, 2008 / 2:38 PM / 10 years ago

CBS News averts strike with new deal

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Writers Guild of America has reached a new contract with CBS News covering 500 newswriters, editors and other union members, averting a possible strike and ending a two-and-a-half year dispute.

The agreement still must be ratified by members of the guild but has been approved unanimously by the WGA-CBS Negotiating Committee. The previous contract expired in April 2005.

The new contract runs until April 1, 2010, and calls for CBS news employees covered by the guild to receive a 3.5 percent raise in 2008 and 2009.

The agreement comes amid a much broader dispute between Hollywood screenwriters and major film and TV studios. That contract dispute led to a strike by about 10,500 WGA members in November, and has brought to a halt production on all scripted prime-time TV series.

Reporting by Paul Thomasch; Editing by Steve Orlofsky

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