As you may be aware, our government has just put a 25-percent tax on newsprint from Canada. Canadian mills have passed that tax on to the newspapers that buy their newsprint. U.S. suppliers have raised their prices to match the Canadian suppliers. The cost of newsprint was already up 10 percent before this happened. The additional 25 percent price increases have forced us to make changes in how we serve readers and advertisers with our printed edition of the newspaper.
Beginning June 1, we will change the publication cycle of The Lebanon Democrat from five days a week to three days a week. We will published a combined Tuesday-Wednesday edition that our subscribers will receive Tuesdays, a combined Thursday-Friday edition our subscribers will receive Thursdays, and, of course, our weekend edition each Saturday.
By doing this, we are able to avoid the drastic price increases that would be necessary if we continued to print and deliver a newspaper five days a week. The savings we get in delivery expenses will offset the increase in the cost of newsprint we are currently experiencing.
Rest assured we will do everything we can to guarantee you receive the same content you are accustomed to receiving. We will have double the comics, crosswords, features, television listings and so forth on publishing days to make certain you don’t miss anything. Beginning in June, we will deliver the same content you have been used to receiving in five days by printing three editions with larger page counts.
From myself down through the entire staff, we are just as disappointed as you may be. This is our livelihood and our love. But we also owe it to our readers to be honest, open and forthcoming. We want to continue to serve our customers with the best-quality content possible at the most affordable price. We believe this move allows us to do just that. Additionally, we will still add strong content to our website on those days we don’t publish.
I appreciate your understanding and look forward to answering any questions and discussing this with you in further detail if you wish.
George Coleman is publisher of The Democrat. Call him at 615-444-3952, ext. 12 or email him at [email protected].