Rep. Maloney introduces Newspaper Revitalization Act

Sep 17, 2009
Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – With newspapers across the country facing down cutbacks, closures or bankruptcy at an alarming rate, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) have introduced the “Newspaper Revitalization Act of 2009” (H.R. 3602 and S. 673) legislation that would help community and metropolitan papers by allowing them to become non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations similar to public broadcasting.

“The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, The Rocky Mountain News, San Francisco Chronicle, and The Baltimore Sun are all facing steep drops in advertising and subscription revenue due to the double-whammy of the recession and competition from the internet,” Rep. Maloney said. “Unless something is done, and done fast, it’s likely that many metropolitan areas may soon have no local daily newspapers—and that would damage our democracy. Providing this option to structure their business would be a way for a community or local foundations to preserve their local paper.”

Newspapers are an essential component to our free democratic society. Studies have shown that areas where daily newspapers have gone out of business there has been a rise in corruption in government and plummeting civil engagement in politics. With the state of the current newspaper model, dependent on advertising and circulation revenue, it will be difficult for newspapers to maintain and produce high quality news without bold changes.

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For the complete text of the bill, click here.