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New York (CNN Business)CNN’s parent company has made a big decision: CNN Center, the network’s landmark building in Atlanta, is going up for sale.

The announcement is a big adjustment internally — but nothing will change right away.
Pascal Desroches, the chief financial officer for WarnerMedia, which is comprised of CNN and other brands such as HBO and Warner Bros, said the company is prioritizing Techwood, another property it owns in Atlanta.

    “Following the sale of the CNN Center, we plan to centralize most of our employees on the Techwood campus,” Desroches wrote in an internal memo. “This process will take several years, so we don’t expect any immediate changes for employees working at the CNN Center.”
    It will be a homecoming of sorts, since CNN was founded in 1980 at a former country club on Techwood Drive.

    Still, the announcement will stir mixed emotions among CNN employees and Atlanta residents. The CNN Center building has been the network’s hub since 1987. While most newscasts are now anchored from New York and Washington, CNN Center control rooms and production teams keep the network humming around the clock. Key functions like and the standards and practices department are based there.
    The building is a beacon for journalism — and it spans a valuable block in downtown Atlanta between Centennial Olympic Park and State Farm Arena.
    “Downtown Atlanta has seen great investment and is quickly becoming an entertainment destination,” Desroches told staffers. “The CNN Center is of great value to a third party that specializes in such developments.”
    So WarnerMedia will look for a buyer. A corporate spokesman said the plan calls for a sale leaseback, meaning that CNN employees will stay at CNN Center for some time while the move is finalized.
    The company, previously known as Time Warner, struck a similar deal upon selling its New York headquarters building in 2014. CNN’s New York offices and other parts of the enterprise moved to a new neighborhood, Hudson Yards, in 2019.
    Time Warner evaluated a sale of CNN Center in Atlanta before the company was acquired by AT&T, a process that began in 2016.
    Sale deliberations were put on hold “until the completion of the merger,” Desroches wrote. “Now that we’ve had time to further evaluate, we’ve concluded that the best course of action is to sell the CNN Center.”

      But “this move in no way should suggest that WarnerMedia is less committed to Atlanta,” he wrote. “Similar to Hudson Yards in Manhattan and the announcement of new office space in Los Angeles at Ivy Station, we feel the long-term benefit of being in one location will be a more collaborative workforce.”
      In Atlanta, the main location will be Techwood, about two miles north of the CNN Center facility. TBS and other channels are operated from the Techwood campus, which still contains the mansion that housed CNN at its outset. Some time in the future, CNN will be back there.
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      Councilman demands booze bill break for struggling NYC restaurants

      A New York City councilman wants state officials to give restaurants a break on strict rules for ordering booze that are weighing on their reopening plans.

      Manhattan Councilman Keith Powers urged the State Liquor Authority to temporarily lift rules that have landed legions of eateries on a “delinquent list” amid the coronavirus pandemic, as The Post reported this week.

      Being on the list forces restaurateurs with overdue booze bills to shell out cash for new orders of beer, wine and spirits. Relaxing the rules for at least 30 days could help cash-strapped restaurants restock their bars without adding to their already hefty financial burdens, Powers argued.

      “As restaurants reopen in Phase Two, we must ensure they are not only able to open their doors again but keep them open,” Powers, a Democrat, wrote in a Thursday letter to SLA Chair Vincent Bradley.

      Powers, a member of the council’s economic development and consumer affairs committees, echoed trade groups’ calls for the SLA to temporarily waive the delinquency rules, which the New York City Hospitality Alliance estimates have ensnared a majority of the city’s eateries and bars.

      The delinquent list prevents merchants from buying alcohol on credit, a common practice in which they pay for orders after receiving them. That has forced restaurants to save cash to replenish their booze supplies after going three months with little to no revenue thanks to the state’s coronavirus shutdown.

      All the bars and restaurants that I’ve talked to in my district are hanging on as they figure out how to pay extremely expensive rent and try to reopen,” Powers told The Post. “It is going to be an immense challenge for all of them.”

      The lawmaker said the SLA should also allow restaurateurs to negotiate payment plans with alcohol wholesalers as they can with any other vendor, which state law currently precludes.

      Powers — who represents swaths of Midtown and the Upper East Side — plans to hold further talks about the issue with the SLA. He said the state legislature should take action if the agency doesn’t provide relief on its own.

      “This is an unpredictable moment, and the State Liquor Authority should be doing everything they can to help out bars and restaurants get back on their feet, period,” Powers told The Post.

      The SLA did not immediately comment on Powers’s letter.

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