The Dallas Morning News will no longer print the Dallas Observer and the Fort Worth Weekly. The decision comes as the daily newspaper begins to pare back some of its printing operations out of the Plano plant. It’s also eliminating 92 jobs, 57 of which were filled. Grant Moise, the newspaper’s general manager, said the paper would save $2 million in the move and that printing the smaller contracts “are no longer in our favor.”
Nationally, the market hasn’t been kind to alt-weeklies, a once-vital part of the journalism produced in any major American city. Since 2016, LA Weekly, Seattle Weekly, the Houston Press, the Village Voice, Baltimore City Paper, and Creative Loafing have laid off all or most of their editorial staffs. They aren’t the only ones either. And so any news that affects our locals makes us pay attention. But this doesn’t seem like it will affect the operations of either.
Patrick Williams, the Observer’s editor, told The News that they’re still negotiating for a printing site. He said Moise sent a letter notifying them on January 1 of the decision. Their contract is up on March 31. Bob Niehoff, the publisher of the Weekly, said they never had a contract with the News. “DMN facilitated our move to Midway Press, where we print now,” he said in an email. “No hard feelings.” Lee Newquist, the paper’s owner, told The News that it was a “seamless transition.”
This is the second round of layoffs in recent months at The News. You’ll recall the last, when 43 people lost their jobs, including 20 in the newsroom. The paper will continue printing the big partners: The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Denton Record-Chronicle, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and USA Today.