Members of the Writers Guild of America overwhelmingly approved a new contract with public television covering freelance scribes.

The agreement was approved by almost 99% of the voting guild members and it covers freelance writers at stations WNET New York, WGBH Boston and KCET Los Angeles, as well as independent producers of public television.

The contract includes minimum compensation increases of 3%, retroactive to Nov. 13; 3.5% on Nov. 13, 1997; and 4.0% on Nov. 13, 1998. There also were identical percentage increases in sequel and spinoff royalties and character payments on each of those dates.

The contract runs until Nov. 12, 1999.

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