Not too long ago, I mentioned that the local newspaper publisher had instigated a number of lawsuits- with the point that lawsuits was how she was going about publishing.
Yesterday’s paper had as its front page above the fold ‘news’ local pumkin carving and this headline “City admits open meeting law violation”. The story, which I can’t show you since the paper hides its archives behind a pay wall, details a settlement of one such suit, which the paper had brought against the city regarding a committee meeting a year ago in which closure of the plaza in front of the newspapers office building, and City Hall for that matter, was discussed without having been posted on the agenda.
The issue is unique in that the paper is both an effected property owner, as well as a business whose value is in having access to, and reporting on, the workings of the jurisdiciton’s that administer the territories the paper is doing its business in.
The key irony is that the attorney for the paper, well known local JD Barry Capello, is quoted in the article’s conclusion “The News-Press will continue to fight for the people’s right to know and prevent secretive tactics by any government officials”.
As pointed out by Craig Smith, a budget tilted toward lawyers as opposed to reporters begs the question as to how the owner/publisher will age that ‘fight’.