ABC is cutting one-dozen Nightline jobs in Washington, D.C., and moving the posts to New York, which will leave only a handful of producers—it wasn't clear how many—as well as correspondent John Donovan and co-anchor Terry Moran to represent the show in Washington. Moran already spends much of his time anchoring from the Big Apple.
Those remaining Nightline producers will be focused on specific stories, a network source said, so the move essentially returns the physical production of Nightline to its New York roots. The program began as America Held Hostage during the Iran crisis and was briefly hosted by Frank Reynolds, before then-State Department correspondent Ted Koppel took over in Washington and put his stamp on the show.
Nightline executive producer James Goldston was in Washington on June 13 to break the news at a meeting with staffers at the ABC News bureau. There was no official comment from the news division. A network source said one of the reasons for moving the jobs was ABC's switch to HD production in New York.
The source, who was familiar with the move, said the jobs being moved included senior producers, producers, segment producers and production associates. The people currently holding down those jobs can reapply for them in New York, he added, although there was no guarantee that they would get them.
ABC has been moving production of Nightline to New York ever since the departure of Koppel and top producer Tom Bettag in 2005 and the arrival of the New York-based Goldston the same year.