100 layoffs at 2 Southern California newspapers

AP News
Posted: Dec 03, 2014 11:47 PM

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Parent company Freedom Communications is laying off about 100 employees at the Orange County Register and the Riverside Press-Enterprise, the papers' new publisher told staffers Wednesday.

Richard Mirman, an ex-casino executive who took over as publisher in October, announced in a memo the layoff of "approximately 100 colleagues across several business units" because "the business has not been profitable." The layoffs were first reported and the memo published in the OC Weekly.

Mirman said in a statement to The Associated Press that the layoffs were a "difficult but necessary step to stabilize our business and adjust costs to match our current revenues."

He said the editorial staff will not be affected by the cuts.

"Today's restructuring does not impact our newsrooms, and thus it will not impact the depth and quality of local journalism that our subscribers, advertisers and community have come to expect," Mirman's statement said.

The layoffs are the latest in a series of staff reductions at the financially struggling Freedom papers.

In September, the company stopped production of the Los Angeles Register just five months after it began publication. In October, it was sued by The Los Angeles Times over what the Times called breach of contract and failure to pay more than $2 million in delivery fees.