John Paton, the new CEO of MediaNews Group, has asked executives at the company’s Bay Area newspapers take another look at their consolidation plan, which were announced in August before he came on board, the Chronicle reported this morning.
The plan calls for consolidating 11 local newspapers into two regional newspapers, “The Tribune,” which would include the Oakland Tribune, and “The Times,” which would include the Contra Costa Times. The changes, which would include dropping the San Mateo County Times masthead all together and delivering the Mercury News to its subscribers, are due to go into effect on Nov. 1.
Dropping the name Oakland from the masthead has angered many in that city, who consider it yet another sight to their oft-maligned city, the Chronicle noted.
Mac Tully, head of MediaNews Group’s Bay Area operations, told the Chronicle that it is too early for him to make any announcements.
“We’re not making any announcements at this time, and things are still in flux. It’s not at a point where I can state with any precision what’s going to happen,” Tully said.
However, Tully said layoffs are still going to take place. The plan calls for 120 of the chain’s 1,500 Bay Area employees to lose their jobs.