Trib to cease publication of 7 weekly newspapers

| Friday, June 20, 2008

Trib Total Media will eliminate seven weekly newspapers and expand eight others as part of a realignment and strategic repositioning of the publications it acquired from Gateway Press Inc. in 2003.

The changes will assure continued service to communities served by the newspapers, said Trib Total Media CEO Ralph Martin.

In addition, the company plans major enhancements to the Pennysaver, the popular weekly shopper distributed free to more than 780,000 households in Southwest Pennsylvania.

"The changes are in step with our strategy of providing a more effective format for our advertisers without sacrificing the neighborhood news coverage these papers provide throughout Allegheny County and in portions of Westmoreland County," Martin said.

June 26 will be the final day of publication for the Bridgeville Area News, the North Journal, McKnight Journal, the Woodland Progress, the Penn Hills Progress, the Coraopolis-Moon Record and the Advance Leader, Martin said.

Starting July 3, households in Allegheny County communities served by those papers will start to receive expanded editions of the Monroeville Times Express, the Plum Advance Leader, the Signal Item, the Pine Creek Journal and the Sewickley Herald, and in Westmoreland County, the Murrysville Star, the Norwin Star and the Penn-Trafford Star.

The format of the weekly Pennysaver will be expanded to tabloid size, to include larger type, more color and improved overall print quality.

In the expanded weekly Gateway newspapers, the Pennysaver will become the classified advertising section. Those newspapers are delivered free in the communities they serve.

The Pennysaver will continue to be mailed free to all other households that receive it now throughout the region, Martin said.

Four editorial positions have been eliminated in conjunction with the changes. Overall, the former Gateway publications employ about 330 people.

"Although we are taking away some of our weekly titles, we will be expanding the ones that remain," said Martin. "Not only will our readers in these communities continue to receive our expanded Gateway newspapers; they also will be receiving a publication combined with a bigger and better Pennysaver."

The changes will not impact two other weekly publications, the South Hills Record and the Herald, which serve the Aspinwall and Fox Chapel area.

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