Charlotte Observer, short on revenue, will lay off 20 employees, five in news
The Charlotte Observer, struggling with weak advertising revenue, has announced it will cut 20 jobs from its staff, including five newsroom positions.
Charlotte Observer Publisher Ann Caulkins told staffers at a meeting Monday that the company “was living quarter to quarter with our budgets.”
The Observer’s announcement follows similar cuts announced two weeks ago at its sister paper, The News & Observer of Raleigh. The newspapers, the first – and second-largest, respectively, in North Carolina are owned by McClatchy Newspapers of Sacramento, Calif.
In addition to the economic and industry troubles that have hurt all U.S. dailies, McClatchy is saddled with paying off debt resulting from its $4.5 billion purchase of the Knight Ridder newspaper chain in 2006 on the eve of the last recession.
Both the Charlotte Observer, formerly a Knight Ridder newspaper, and The N&O have combined resources and staff in recent years to save on costs. But continuing declines in print circulation and advertising revenue have forced both to shrink their staffs through attrition, buyouts and layoffs.
According to the website Paper Cuts, the newspaper industry has laid off about 17,000 workers since 2008.