The News-Journal’s 2,400-square-foot office in the St. Joe’s Business Park is less than a quarter the size of its old bureau on SR100, closed three years ago, and a concession that it can no longer address its Flagler competition–including a weekly newspaper and three radio stations–long distance.
The Palm Coast Observer’s move would be a frontal assault on the Daytona Beach News-Journal’s diminishing hold on the Flagler market, where the paper has also been contending with competition from three new radio stations and online media.
Each title went for barely $9 million, less than half the $20 million Halifax Media paid for the Daytona Beach News-Journal alone when it acquired that paper in April 2010–at discount from the $300 million price originally set by a federal judge in 2006.
The News-Journal’s losses–the paper now reaches just a fifth of Flagler households–are at odds with gains at the St. Augustine Record and an end to declines, for now, at the Orlando Sentinel and the Jacksonville Times-Union.
The News-Journals losses over the past 12 months were not as steep as in previous years: a 1.2 percent decline on weekdays, 2.5 percent decline on Sundays, though other regional newspapers are seeing increases in circulation.
The story, spiked Wednesday evening after being approved for the next day’s paper, cited police saying that the girl’s 5-year-old brother had told his mother he’d drowned his sister–information that other media reported Wednesday evening.
At the 1-year mark of his ownership, News-Journal publisher Michael Redding is offering $25 to staffers who secure a 3-month subscription, $40 to those who get 6-month deal, and $50 to those who land $100 in advertising. Newsroom staffers are “insulted.”
The News-Journal circulation has fallen by more than 41,000 copies, or 39 percent since 2005 though its recent, accelerating decline is far steeper than losses the newspaper industry is experiencing across the country.
A federal judge ruled against adequately funding News-Journal retirees’ pension plan, ordering instead that $40 million in cash and other values should go to Cox, the newspaper’s former minority owner.
Retirees’ pension and health plans are in jeopardy as battle continues over who’s owed what first.