Future of local daily newspaper in doubt

Another extension of the February 1st due date to make nearly $10 million in interest payments has been granted to Morris Publishing Group LLC by its lenders according to a report received by Historic City News this week.

This is the sixth extension for Morris Publishing, the parent company of The St. Augustine Record, the Florida Times Union, three daily newspapers in Georgia and other U.S. publications.

The St. Augustine Record publisher Derek May announced today that the price of home delivery of their printed newspaper will increase to $12.31 a month for customers in their “core market”.

Morris currently publishes a total of 13 daily printed newspapers – a business that has seen severe declines in recent years due to many factors including large capital requirements, high operating expenses, economic recession and a preference trend of advertisers and readers towards electronic news outlets like Historic City News.

In a published earnings statement dated May 14th, Morris said “several factors relating to the Company’s outstanding debt raise significant uncertainty about its liquidity and ability to continue as a going concern.”

The statement went on to say “the Company’s debt far exceeds the current value of its assets”. There has been speculation for months that the company would file bankruptcy puting the future of the local daily newspaper in doubt.

Photo credit: Historic City News photographer Kerry McGuire

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