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April 17, 2020, 12:34 p.m.
LINK: www.latimes.com  ➚   |   Posted by: Joshua Benton   |   April 17, 2020

The first set of cuts at the Los Angeles Times — which said this week its ad revenue has “nearly been eliminated” by coronavirus — came on the business side, plus pay reductions for some editors in the newsroom. But the cuts are now moving more thoroughly into news production, with the closure of three weekly newspapers it publishes. The Times’ Meg James:

The Los Angeles Times’ parent company, California Times, is folding three award-winning community newspapers that serve the cities of Burbank, Glendale and La Cañada Flintridge.

Fourteen staff members learned Thursday that they were being laid off with severance. Ten are members of the Los Angeles Times Guild…

The three community papers were an attempt to serve readers with intensely local coverage: information about city councils, school boards and high school sports relevant primarily to their particular corners of a sprawling metropolis.

But the papers had a rich history of their own. The Burbank Leader was founded in 1985, a successor to the Burbank Daily Review, which was founded in 1908. The Glendale News-Press dated back to 1905. The La Cañada Valley Sun sprang to life in 1946, helping usher in Southern California’s postwar building and population boom.

These are not small cities that are losing their papers. Glendale has 201,000 people and Burbank has 103,000. (La Cañada Flintridge has 23,000.) The idea that a city of 200,000 people could not support a daily newspaper would’ve seemed foreign to a publisher a few decades ago; that it apparently can’t support a weekly now is the unfortunate reality.

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