NBC's TODAY anchor Matt Lauer has reportedly "infuriated" his co-workers because he refuses to take a pay cut amid layoffs at the network.
RadarOnline reported on Wednesday that a source revealed nine staff members were recently laid off due to TODAY's yearlong ratings decline. The source told the website that there will be additional layoffs in the near future and Lauer's colleagues are disappointed that he refuses to take a pay cut from his $25 million contract to help save staffers' jobs.
A show insider told RadarOnline that Lauer "refused to take a pay cut to avoid the layoffs, Matt blames bad management for TODAY's rating woes."
"It has really irked the staff because Matt is the highest paid journalist in the business, and he only works four days a week! If he had agreed to a one percent pay cut, those jobs could have been saved," the source said.
The source also revealed that TODAY staffers were hoping that Lauer would follow in the footsteps of Tonight Show host Jay Leno who took a 50 percent paycut last year to save the jobs of 20 staffers. The insider suggested that Lauer, however, is too selfish to follow Leno's lead.
"It would never cross Matt's mind to voluntarily take a pay cut like Jay Leno did," the source explained. "What Jay did was total class, and he took responsibility for the situation. Matt has been calling the shots at TODAY for a very long time, and he could learn a lot from Jay."
Another insider responded to the claims and confirmed there were layoffs but debunked the report that additional staffers will be let go in the future.
"There was a restructure at NBC News and less than two percent of employees at Nightly News with Brian Williams and the TODAY show were impacted, and those employees have been generously taken care of," another insider told Radar Online in a statement. "NBC will help those employees find jobs, and they are able to apply for current open positions. Neither show is looking to cut costs, and there are no future layoffs planned. The TODAY show is not and has not cut costs and is currently hiring."
Enstars reported in March that Lauer's $25 million contract will not be renewed when it expires in 2014.