The Talk of Connecticut
 
Show Rundown for Friday, January 8, 2015
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Prof. RICH HANLEY (Associate professor and director of the graduate journalism program in the School of Communications at Quinnipiac University in Hamden) Rich chatted about the constantly changing TV landscape in Connecticut. Media General, which owns WTNH-TV, News 8, has confirmed that it has completed the negotiation of terms for a transaction under which Nexstar Broadcasting Group, Inc. would acquire Media General. "The thicket of complications in this deal are such that uncertainty will persist for many months," Hanley said. “Nexstar can't complete the deal until Media General legally terminates its agreement to buy Meredith even though that agreement collapsed last year. The FCC also has to weigh in on the deal with regulatory approval. In the Hartford-New Haven market, Media General owns WTNH and Meredith owns WFSB, so staff at those two stations will once again have to fortify themselves against rampant speculation about what the new owner - if any - will do once a deal is completed."

STEVE ODLUND (Former CEO of both Office Depot and AutoZone and current CEO of the Committee for Economic Development) JOB CUT REPORT DUE 2015 December Job Cuts Report: 23,622 Lowest Monthly Total in 15 Years. A strong economy, coupled with what appears to be a growing reluctance to announce layoffs during the holidays, contributed to December experiencing the lowest number of monthly job cuts in more than 15 years, according to the report released today by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. U.S.-based employers announced planned workforce reductions totaling 23,622 in December. That was 24 percent lower than the 30,593 job cuts announced in November and 28 percent below last year's 32,640 December job cuts. December was not only the lowest job-cut month of 2015, it was the lowest job-cut month since June 2000, when employers announced 17,241 planned layoffs. Last month also represents the lowest December job-cut total on record, since Challenger began its monthly tracking in 1993. The December decline was significant enough to prevent 2015 job cuts from reaching a six-year high. In all, employers announced 598,510 job cuts during the year, 24 percent more than the 483,171 planned layoffs in 2014. While 2015 total still saw the heaviest downsizing activity since 2011 (606,082), the year definitely ended with job cuts on the decline. Employers announced 105,072 job cuts in the fourth quarter, down 49 percent from 205,759 in the previous quarter. The fourth quarter total was 12 percent lower than the 119,763 job cuts announced during the same quarter in 2014. The 105,072 job cuts announced in the final three months of 2015 represents the lowest quarterly total since the third quarter of 2012, when employers cut 102,910 workers from their payrolls. "It used to be that companies would not hesitate to announce job cuts around the holidays. In fact, the heaviest job-cut period of the year was often in the closing months. However, that appears to have changed in the wake of the Great Recession," said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
--What does the December jobs report look like? How was 2015 and what should we look for in 2016?

State House Minority Leader THEMIS KLARIDES Themis talked about her call for a public hearing about all the problems still popping up at the Department of Motor Vehicles since their major computer upgrade. The latest software glitch is causing some vehicle registrations to be cancelled due to mistaken reports of a lack of insurance. In some cases, this glitch is costing motorists hundreds of dollars for tickets and towing fees.

Fox News Radio's JON DECKER (Live from the White House) CHANGES COMING FOR SOME PENTAGON MEDALS --The Pentagon is fundamentally changing the way it recognizes service in a combat zone by tightening the criteria for awarding the Bronze Star and creating a new “C” device that can be pinned to other traditionally noncombat awards. The Defense Department will create a “C” device to denote an award was earned in a combat setting. It will be the same size and design of the current “V” device denoting valor and may be affixed to noncombat performance awards such as commendation or achievement medals. --However, the Pentagon has firmly rejected the idea of giving drone pilots and cyber warriors their own medal, and instead will offer a new "R" device to pin on existing noncombat medals. After a two-year review of the once-controversial issue, defense officials decided that creating such a device that may be affixed to noncombat performance awards is sufficient to "specifically recognize remote but direct impact on combat operations," according to a memo obtained by Military Times.

ACHIM NOWAK (His newest book is called "The Moment." He's an international authority on presence and interpersonal connection. His first two books - "Infectious" and "Power Speaking" - have become essential leadership development tools with Fortune 500 executives and entrepreneurs. Achim's work integrates a wealth of experience in the personal transformation field, actor training, conflict resolution, and spiritual practice. He has been featured on CBS's "60 Minutes," as well as NPR, Fox News, and in the Miami Herald. His weekly "Energy Boost" message offers practical tools for creating an energized life and has a devoted following across the globe. Achim lives in Miami, Florida) We live in a hugely distracted world. What if there was a way of knowing our moments more richly and more deeply as they unfold? How might this alter the experience of our lives? That is the tantalizing premise of Achim Nowak’s "THE MOMENT." It introduces the reader to 4 simple keys. These keys are practical and entirely common-sense. That is their beauty. Return to experiencing the world with all of your senses. Learn how to tune into prajna wisdom – that’s the wisdom that talks to us as a moment unfolds. Discover ways of receiving and wave-riding energy. And reap the rewards of making time stand still.

ROB RAY stops by to chat with Brad about his new weekend music show, The Big D.

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