Although it’s moving staff out of its offices in Kentucky, The Cincinnati Enquirer intends to continue publishing a daily Kentucky edition with unique content for Northern Kentucky.
Editor Steve Wilson was among those laid off from The Kentucky Enquirer on Aug. 1. He will remain at the newspaper for four weeks, along with several colleagues who were also laid off.
Wilson told CityBeat that The Enquirer isn’t backing away from its commitment to northern Kentucky, but acknowledges problems posed by the layoffs.
“Clearly, all things being equal, you want to have reporters based in the area they’re covering,” Wilson says.
Wilson won’t speculate on Gannett’s reasoning, but he cites cost concerns as an ongoing problem.
“Gannett, like most companies, is very bottom line-driven, and they had to do something to reduce expenses,” he says, pointing to the ongoing trend of downsizing in the news industry.
Gannett Blog claims 23 people were laid off at Enquirer offices, but it’s difficult to confirm the report because of Gannett’s secrecy with staffing issues. More than 300 people lost their jobs at Gannett newspapers around the nation, according to the blog.
A source close to the situation who asked to remain anonymous told CityBeat that eight reporters, two editors and one photographer are moving from the Kentucky offices to downtown Cincinnati, with the remaining Kentucky staff members laid off. Staff members were also moved from the newspaper’s West Chester office, which covered news in Butler and Warren counties.
Original reports claimed the Kentucky and West Chester offices were closing, but they will remain open for reporters in a limited capacity.
When asked about the layoffs, Gannett spokesperson Jeremy Gaines told journalism industry blogger Jim Romenesko, “Some USCP (U.S. Community Publishing) sites are making cuts to align their business plans with local market conditions.”