Hubbard Broadcasting's KSAX Alexandria (Minn.) has eliminated its news department, reports the AP, laying off 17 employees. The station is an ABC affiliate operating in central Minnesota.
Hubbard owns KSTP-KSTC in the Twin Cities, around 130 miles away.
It is rare for stations to get rid of news altogether. WYOU Wilkes-Barre-Scranton did so in 2009. A year later, KOHD Bend replaced newscasts with shorter news "updates", amidst heavy newsroom layoffs.
KSAX station manager Ed Smith told the AP the decision "came down to economics."
Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.
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