Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.
Gazette Company announces 100 layoffs
The Gazette Company in Cedar Rapids, owners of The Gazette newspaper and KCRG-TV, has begun a reorganization effort that is expected to leave 100 employees without work.
In a blog post Tuesday evening, editor Steve Buttry indicated that he had fired 13 individuals.
“The decisions we carried out Tuesday in the newsroom I lead and throughout Gazette Communications were inevitable and unavoidable,” Buttry wrote. “mployees own stock in this company and they knew the financial figures that forced this week’s decisions. They had, in fact, been expecting the cuts for weeks. Some departments were already cutting staff in smaller numbers as they reorganized, a few here, a few there. We have been, and after these cuts continue to be, larger than most comparable newspaper companies. Everyone knew that our current revenues couldn’t continue to support that workforce.
“But knowing the cuts were coming and knowing they were necessary didn’t soften the blow.”
Buttry will take the lead on content creation for all Gazette Communications products — real and virtual. Lyle Muller, who has been in charge of the Iowa City newsroom, has been named the new editor of the paper and, as has become the tradition, has begun his own blog.
The Gazette family of companies has been in a process of reorganization for two years, according to Chuck Peters, president and chief executive.
“As we finalized that process, we never expected to also be confronted with the worst natural disaster in Iowa’s history and the weakest national economy in decades,” he said in a prepared statement.
The press release issued by the company indicated that Peters would be placing additional information on his blog, but that had not happened prior to publication of this news report.
The company employed roughly 600 people at the time of the June 2008 floods. There is no information yet available as to which employees were given pink slips today, or when other layoffs are expected to occur.