Triple Crown Media Inc. Cuts Work Force by 5%

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Newspaper publisher Triple Crown Media Inc., which owns daily and weekly newspapers in Georgia, has announced a 5% companywide work force reduction because of the nation’s economic downturn and increased paper and fuel costs, the company said.

The Lexington, Ky.-based company made the announcement Friday. One of the company’s newspapers, the Gwinnett Daily Post, said it reduced its full-time work force by 7%.

“The credit crunch coupled with an economic slump of this magnitude has put pressure on our industry,” said Michael J. Gebhart, the company’s executive vice president. “In difficult times like these, we have to batten down the hatches.”

Gebhart said the company’s newsprint supplier began raising its rates in December. Over a period of six months, the newsprint cost will increase by nearly 25%, he said.

Although the company took other steps to streamline operations, it determined that a work force reduction would also be needed, Gebhart said.

“These are tough economic times for most and it’s certainly being felt in the newspaper business,” said J.K. Murphy, publisher of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

The company operates six daily Georgia newspapers, including the Gwinnett Daily Post, the Albany Herald, the Rockdale Citizen, the Newton Citizen, the Clayton News-Daily and the Henry Daily Herald.

It also operates one Georgia weekly, the Jackson Progress-Argus.

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