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To: maryz

yup—his name doesn’t ring a bell with me though


7 posted on 09/19/2007 10:15:25 AM PDT by raccoonradio
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To: raccoonradio; All

Ruling leaves Howie Carr in limbo
Jessica Heslam By Jessica Heslam
Wednesday, September 19, 2007

A Suffolk Superior Court judge ruled today that WRKO radio was entitled to exercise the “right to match” provision in Howie Carr’s contract, which allows the station to meet a competitor’s offer and leaves the popular talk show host in limbo.

It’s unclear whether Carr will take over the morning drive show on Greater Media’s WTKK (96.9 FM) tomorrow.

Said WRKO (680 AM) spokesman George Regan: “We hope Howie will continue his show on WRKO radio.”

The “right to match” clause in Carr’s contract with WRKO, which is owned by Entercom Communications, gives the station the right to meet a competing salary offer within 180 days from any radio or TV station within WRKO’s coverage area.

The judge said Carr could have quietly met with Greater Media to discuss or negotiate his future while his WRKO agreement “was still operative.”

“What Carr could not do is what he did here: receive and accept an offer from Greater Boston Radio Inc. before his Artist’s Agreement had terminated,” the judge wrote.

Shepard Davidson, an attorney for WRKO, declined comment today. Carr attorney Bret Cohen could not be reached.

Carr’s attorneys argued that the right to match and non-compete provisions were illegal and unenforceable under state law and pointed to a statute that prohibits the enforceability of post-employment restrictions against people who work in the broadcast industry.

But the statute says a broadcast employee can go to work for a competitor after they have been terminated by their employer, terminated by mutual agreement or their contract expired. Carr’s contract with WRKO expired today and he made a deal to jump to WTKK in July.

“The Artist’s Agreement still has not been terminated by Entercom, or by mutual agreement of Entercom and Carr, or by the expiration of the Agreement itself,” Judge Allan van Gestel wrote in today’s 18-page ruling.

The judge wrote that Entercom Communications was allowed to exercise its right to match WTKK’s offer while Carr’s agreement with WRKO was still “fully operative” for two more months.

“That exercise continued the Artist’s Agreement in effect well beyond September 19,” the judge wrote. “And it is not a ‘post-employment’ restriction.”

“For Carr to receive protection,” under the state statute, the judge wrote, “in the circumstances presented here would require this Court to ignore the fact that his Artist’s Agreement has not terminated.”

However, the judge said the non-compete clause in Carr’s agreement is unenforceable under state law after Carr’s contract with WRKO ends.

The judge said he wasn’t ruling on whether Carr is compelled to stay working at WRKO.

Carr and WRKO have been embroiled in a legal battle since July when WTKK offered him a five-year contract worth about $7 million to host the slot left vacant by fired shock jock Don Imus. WRKO matched the rival station’s offer the following day.


8 posted on 09/19/2007 11:20:31 AM PDT by raccoonradio
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