More Layoffs at The Enquirer

Another round of layoffs hit Cincinnati's only remaining daily newspaper this afternoon. Various reports indicate between 12 and 20 people were let go at The Enquirer.—-

Among staffers reportedly laid off were Joe Fenton, assistant metro editor; Kenneth Amos, director of news and operations; Sharon Morgan, editorial page assistant and ex-readers representative; and Bruce Holtgren, digital content producer.

Also laid off were Gary Osborne, director of information technology; C.E. Reutter, digital content producer; Jeff Tindall, digital content producer; and Greg Watson, area circulation manager.

The Enquirer is owned by Virginia-based The Gannett Co., which also owns USA Today, more than 100 newspapers nationwide and 23 TV stations.

More than 1,200 employees were laid off at Gannett's newspaper holdings nationwide in 2009, including 101 people at The Enquirer.

Also, Enquirer employees have been required to take several rounds of unpaid leave during the past two years.

Most workers were required to take a five-day furlough in 2011's first quarter. Similar furloughs occurred in the first and second quarters of last year.

Newly-installed Executive Editor Carolyn Washburn announced the layoffs in the newsroom today. According to an item posted by one Enquirer staffer on Facebook, “I've never seen so many newsies cry so openly.”

Like most newspaper publishers nationwide, Gannett has been hit hard by a migration of readers to free content on the Internet and a related drop in advertising revenues.

During 2010's fourth quarter, Gannett reported a 0.4 percent increase in total revenue, to $1.46 billion; and a 30 percent increase in net income, to $174.1 million. Most of the gains, however, were due to the firm's broadcasting and digital operations.

By comparison, Gannett's publishing division had a 4.7 percent drop in revenues during the fourth quarter, to $1.1 billion. Advertising revenue fell by almost 6 percent compared to same quarter a year earlier.

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