SPRINGDALE — WEHCO Newspapers, Inc. will consolidate its printing in Little Rock, announcing plans Tuesday to cease printing at the company’s plant in Springdale in mid-January.
“Our commitment to local, community journalism will not be impacted by where the newspaper is printed,” Brent A. Powers, president of NWA Media and Northwest Arkansas Newspapers, said in a statement. “We will continue to provide a quality print and digital replica product.”
The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and several weekly publications including La Prensa Libre, Neighbor Shopper, Pea Ridge Times, River Valley Democrat-Gazette, Siloam Springs Herald-Leader, The Weekly Vista in Bella Vista, Washington County Enterprise-Leader, Westside Eagle Observer in western Benton County and the McDonald County Press in Missouri will be printed in Little Rock after the change.
“This press consolidation is the best option as it allows us to realign our expenses to better offset declining revenues,” Powers continued.
The move will eliminate 14 full-time and 10 part-time jobs among press operators and mailroom staff. Powers said he met with the staff Tuesday.
“Each employee impacted will receive one week of severance pay for every year of service, up to 12 weeks,” according to Powers.
“As the newspaper business continues to be challenged by declines in print advertising, we must find ways to be more efficient while continuing to focus on quality journalism for our readers,” said Mark Lane, president of WEHCO Newspapers, Inc.