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Media General Cutting Staff 11%

Following Wednesday’s round of layoffs at its stations, Media General announced that it will have cut its work force some 11% by July.

Citing the “overall slowing in the economy,” president and CEO Marshall Morton said around 745 publishing positions would be eliminated, 60 in interactive media and 45 in the broadcast division. The planned cuts equate to annualized savings of $40 million.

Media General’s broadcast division generated $1.3 million in political revenues in April, partially offsetting a decline in national ad sales driven by weak automotive and telecommunications advertising, the company reported. Gross time sales in broadcast decreased 3.8% for the month.

“Our efforts to reduce operating costs have necessarily included personnel,” Morton said. “We began our work-force reductions in early 2007 in response to the deepening recession in Florida and the overall slowing of the U.S. economy.”

Media General owns 22 stations. Among those hit Wednesday were WJAR Providence, R.I., with seven layoffs.