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Delta chief orders 10% pay cuts

ATLANTA -- Delta Air Lines' chief executive yesterday said he is declining his six-figure salary for the rest of the year as the airline cuts by 10 percent the pay of executives, ticket and gate agents, and other nonunion workers.

CEO Gerald Grinstein also said the nation's third-largest airline will cut retirement benefits and increase employee contributions to health insurance as part of its plan to avoid bankruptcy. "It is in everyone's best interest that we protect Delta's future by taking these steps together now," he wrote to employees. Delta would not say how much Grinstein is relinquishing. His predecessor, Leo Mullin, earned about $500,000.

Also yesterday, Delta's pilots said they ratified an agreement allowing the airline to employ newly retired pilots to prevent staffing shortages. Delta is seeking $1 billion in concessions from unionized s. It has cut 16,000 employees in the past three years and plans to cut 7,000 more jobs.

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