Is there more bad news ahead for newspapers in New Jersey?
Lee Enterprises, which owns The Press of Atlantic City, has chopped $1 million off the editorial budget of the Buffalo News, once the jewel of their newspaper chain and one of the 25 largest daily newspapers in the U.S., Poynter reported today.
In the first two months of 2023, Lee cut for veteran reports, eliminated open positions, stopped hiring new journalists, and then eliminated five positions at their design desk. That was followed by the closure of their production facility and outsourcing their newspaper printing to Advance Publications in Cleveland.
Since then, union leaders have been unable to get a meeting with management.
Lee, which owns 77 daily newspapers in 26 states, cut 400 jobs in 2022 and announced earlier this year that their staff would be required to take unpaid furloughs.
The Press of Atlantic City stopped newspaper home deliveries this month and has reduced the number of print editions to three days a week. They closed their local printing plant nine years ago and outsourced production to a Gannett facility in Morris County for the last five years.
Despite a dearth of local news – much of what they do have in their digital edition remains behind a paywall — today’s newspaper carried five pages of legal ads.
Founded by future New Jersey Gov. Walter Edge in the 1890s, the newspaper was sold the Berkshire Hathaway in 2013 and then to Lee in 2020.