The Peninsula Daily News, one of the last small, community newspaper to boast its own printing facility, is about to lose that unique trait, along with a handful of key staff members as part of a purchase deal with an infamous Canadian media buyer.
The paper's editor/publisher John Brewer announced today that the PDN has been purchased by Canadian newspaper hoarder David Black's Black Press Ltd. of Victoria, B.C. and will now be printed at by Sound Publishing in Everett.
A total of 20 print and mailroom employees are slated to be laid off come Nov. 14.
Black Press also announced that it had purchased two other small weekly papers, the Sequim Gazette and Forks Forum.
The PDN has been around since 1916 and has a current distribution of 15,000 on weekdays and 16,000 on Sundays.
In a seemingly-sterilized statement, Brewer attempted to spin the sale into good news, saying that it "gives us a connection to more resources," but later lamenting that laying off staff was "terrible" and that he is "very sad about it."
The paper had been owned by Peter Horvitz of Horvitz Newspapers since 1994 and was the last newspaper he owned.
Perhaps the only silver lining in all of this is that Sound Publishing, the largest community newspaper company in the Pacific Northwest, has top-notch printing capabilities, so whatever version of the PDN that's still around will look sharp.
Whether the new owner will keep the newsroom employees around who put what's in the newspaper remains to be seen.
For more on David Black and his newspaper shopping sprees, see Seattle Weekly's 2008 cover story on the subject.