New York Daily News cuts half its staff

Posted on DEC 17, 2018

The announcement detailed a new direction for the paper, with an increased focus on breaking news.

Daily News staff members were notified of the cuts in an email sent by the company's human resources department. The email detailed a new direction for the paper, with an increased focus on breaking news, particularly stories about crime, civil justice and public responsibility. The paper will still cover local news and sports, the email said.

The email also notified employees that editor-in-chief Jim Rich and managing editor Kristen Lee were among those leaving their jobs. Rich tweeted early Monday a warning: "If you hate democracy and think local government should operate unchecked and in the dark, then today is a good day for you."

Robert York will be the new editor-in-chief, according to NBC. He was most recently the publisher and editor-in-chief of The Morning Call, a newspaper serving eastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey.

York, speaking to Gothamist,said that the news of the layoffs had caught him off guard.

"I need to regroup and figure this out because there was a timing sequence to this that's now, not being adhered to, in terms of the announcement," York told Gothamist.

The Daily News had recently scorched New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio for the city's treatment of people living in public housing, but even he had some kind words for the newspaper via Twitter.

"It's no secret that I've disagreed with the Daily News from time to time," de Blasio said in the tweet. "But Tronc's greedy decision to gut the newsroom is bad for government and a disaster for NYC. Tronc should sell the paper to someone committed to local journalism and keeping reporters on the beat."