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Help us help our communities

Help us help our communities

It’s the time of the year when John McLoone starts drumming home a similar message. It’s a selfish one. I’m asking you to support your local newspaper.

This year, we are running a campaign that will serve two purposes: You’ll have the warm, fuzzy feeling of doing your best to help provide an independent media source for your community, and you’ll look really cool in the process, because we’re going to give you a free T-shirt. If you have too many T-shirts, we’ll give you a coffee mug instead.

Many communities know all too well what it’s like to not have a local newspaper. Many communities we serve had theirs taken from them in moves of corporate desperation. At that time, we doubled down and expanded our news operation. We’re a believer in what a local newspaper does for a community, and we’re committed to helping our hometowns.

Lately, conglomerate website companies are popping up under the pretense of being “local,” though the hub of their operations is probably thousands of miles away. Their singular purpose is to attempt to profit from and not support the community. That’s not us. Sure, our goal is to make a living, but we’re a big believer in giving back to the community. We’ve held campaigns to help food pantries and numerous non-profit organizations. We’ve donated thousands of dollars in advertising for worthwhile community events. Our company and employees roll up their sleeves and help where needed, right here at home.

We’ve pointed out some startling statistics about what happens in towns that have no local newspaper. Property taxes rise and government is able to operate in the shadows. That’s not going to happen where we are located. This last year alone, I’ve personally sent dozens of requests to municipal clerks and public officials for clarification on meeting items and closed sessions to make sure the information is printed on paper for all to see. We’ve exposed financial dealings that your government meant to keep secret. We think you have a right to know, and we’re going to work hard to tell the story.

My father was a local newspaper publisher decades ago. He sold his papers and retired, and then watched while they were run into the ground by what is now the nation’s biggest publisher. Those community papers no longer exist. There are no obituaries in print anymore. There’s no high school sports coverage. There are no public notices from local government available for citizens to see what is going on at city hall. We’re working hard to build a local publishing company that will continue its mission to serve the community for years to come. Would you help? There’s a form in this paper where you can subscribe or extend your subscription. It would personally

MY View

BY JOHN McLOONE

November 23, 2021