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Morning News of Northwest Arkansas making cuts

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Moderator1, Apr 23, 2009.

  1. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I'd love to see us be able to go a week or so without any of these threads. From The Pipeline:

    The Morning News of Northwest Arkansas (Stephens Media) is cutting staff. No word on the final total. One sports staffer was let go, according to another sports writer.

    Mandatory furloughs of 16 hours per quarter must be taken as well.
  2. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Do we know the name of the person in sports?
  3. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I don't.
    I'm sure someone does.
  4. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Space, too. From The Pipeline:

    Staff News
    By Lisa Thompson | Thu, Apr 23, 2009Morning Message
    A number of changes took effect today at The Morning News. I share them here in the most candid way I can and trust that this information will stay between us. We will be making (or have made) a web announcement later today and there will be a story in print tomorrow and again on Sunday and perhaps Monday. We will have an editorial department staff meeting in Springdale at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 29.
    First, format changes. In order to further reduce pages and to allow us a more simplified press set up, we have combined the four main sections that we produce each day into two sections Monday-Saturday. The two sections will typically be 10 or 12 pages, but will vary depending on the ad percentage. We will continue to zone the front of the A section as we have been. We will try for open “second cover” pages inside the sections to note the change in subject matter as we did with the state/region cover page in the back of the A section, but there may be days when ads appear on those pages as well.
    It will be more important than ever that reporters meet their length estimates, especially at night.
    A typical 10 page A section would be:
    Pages 1-3 – local news, zoned
    4 – obits
    5 – local common page – may contain state/region news
    6 – editorial
    7 – biz cover
    8- biz jump; stories
    9-10- state, regional, national and international news.
    A typical 10-page B section would be:
    Pages 1-5 – sports
    Page 6 –7 - feature cover
    8-9 – comics and puzzles
    10 – weather, dear Abby and maybe the second crossword and crypto-whatever brought back
    For Sunday, we would have four sections with two running in advance. Page count should be 10-12 range but will depend on the ad stack. A typical Sunday would be:
    A section – local news, state, region, national, international
    B section – sports
    C section – would run earlier Saturday evening - Business and editorial
    D sections – would run earlier Saturday evening – Our Town.
    We will need to start the presses 30 minutes earlier tonight and Friday night and 15 minutes early each night after that.
    Second, the reduction in pages, simplified press set up and overall need to cut costs has lead to a number of job eliminations throughout the newspaper that took effect today. Nine of those were in editorial and will mean a shifting of duties, days off and hours for many of us. Please try to stay focused on the tasks at hand and remember that this much change will mean some bumps in the road as work things out.
    Third, in order to keep the job eliminations to the lowest possible number, each editorial staff member will be required to take one furlough day each six weeks, beginning Sunday, April 26. These days will be unpaid and TOWP cannot be used. They must be scheduled with the approval of your supervising editor. So that we may track them departmentwide, please note them as furlough days on the vacation calendar assigned to Leeanna.
    For planning purposes through the end of the year, this would mean one day between
    April 26-June 6; June 7-July 18; July 19-Aug. 29; Aug, 30-Oct. 10; Oct. 11-Nov. 21; and Nov. 22 – Dec. 31.
    Last, to mitigate these cuts as much as possible, we eliminated nonpersonnel expenses further, including the elimination of the remaining correspondent’s budget and all professional fees and dues that we have traditionally paid. The reductions affected everyone from Rusty down.
    If you have an immediate question, please ask your supervisor, Rusty or myself. General questions can also be addressed at Wednesday’s staff meeting. We’ve done great things with our product in the past few years and will continue to do great things as we strive to be the source of news and information for Northwest Arkansas. We will be focused more than ever in the future to providing that information that can only be found on our website or in our newspaper – unique, local coverage and enterprise.
    To coin the boss – I appreciate all that you do each day.
  5. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    What are "nonpersonnel expenses"? Does that mean they aren't paying for mileage, meals, etc?
  6. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

    That went well.
  7. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    20-24 pages for the entire paper on a typical Monday through Saturday? That seems tiny.

    What is the circulation of this paper?
  8. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    37k M-F and 41K on Sunday, according to www.accessabc.com.

    They played up in the last APSE contest in the 40-100k. Got a Top 10 daily, honorable mentions in Sunday and special section.
  9. Desk_dude

    Desk_dude Member

    Stephens Media also owns the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the cash cow of the company.

    Could layoffs and furloughs be coming there?
  10. doggieseatdoggies

    doggieseatdoggies New Member

    Sixteen? CHNI is doing 40.
  11. crusoes

    crusoes Active Member

    Gannett, too. Or, as I call them, vacations with all the free time and none of the hassle of being paid.

    Oh, and I get to answer questions every day about my paper's future. It's sad that I can predict how many games the Lions will or won't win and be spot on, but can't tell if I'll have a job when my furlough ends at the end of June.

    That and the insomnia are pissing me off this morning.
  12. bigblueman

    bigblueman Member

    Does a 16 hour furlough keep you from applying for unemployment, thereby allowing the company to not pay increased unemployment insurance premiums?
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