Friday, February 22, 2013

Daily Times gets new owner in April

After filing for bankruptcy in September, Journal Register Company concluded its auction and is seeking judicial approval of the sale of the company to 21st CMH Acquisition Co. 

Currently, Journal Register Company owns the Daily Times, and 21st CMH Acquisition Company was the only company willing to buy all the news papers owned by Journal Register Company. Most likely the judge will allow the sale to go through. 

Part of the bankruptcy process, and in conjunction with the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Act, requirers employers with 100 or more workers to give a minimum 60 days notice of plant closings and mass layoffs. Daily Times employees received an additional letter by email Sunday instructing them they will need to reapply for their positions starting March 1. 

Those selected would be hired at-will, would have their base wages reduced by 15 percent, and employees would be expected to pay 50 percent of the premium for their health insurance. This company also would have the right to set different wage and commission rates for advertising and sales positions.

The already low paid Daily Times employees will be paid less if they are rehired. 

Will the Daily Times staff reapply for their jobs to earn less money? 
Will the new company continue to publish the Daily Times? 
Will community bloggers still be welcome on the Daily Times site? 

Most staffers will probably reapply for their old jobs, and any promising new job that may be looking for their talents. If they want to stay with newspapers, there’s slim pickings out there.

The Daily Times is likely to stay around. Delaware County is big and important. But, the paper will have to improve profit margins. Look for a smaller paper, increased pricing, no Saturday paper, or something. 

Most of the readers of this blog come from the site. If they decided to nix blogging, I’d probably shut this thing down and join the Chester Spirit (sike).

As much as Chester loves to buy the Daily Times everyday, we don’t have much of an emotional stake in the paper. No one from our city works in the newsroom or sells ads. 

Besides Rob Knox in sports for a couple years and me in advertising for 10 months, all we have had to connect with is Alex Butcher, a part time maintenance man, and Wally McKinney, a long time employee driver. AND NO, Maurice was not an employee.

But, with new owners, maybe it’s time for folks like the NAACP to meet the new owners and demand some representation down here. Yeah, right!

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