The day after I was laid off from The Daily Union, I attended the December Grandview Plaza City Council meeting. The town of around 1,500 people was one of the beats I covered for the paper.
During their meeting, I informed city officials that I had been laid off from the newspaper. The publisher of the paper told me there were too few subscribers in Grandview Plaza to continue to write stories about the city. So, I also informed my former sources that The Daily Union no longer planned to cover Grandview Plaza.
The paper also plans to discontinue coverage of Milford and Chapman. I will inform their officials as soon as the holidays are over.
I felt Grandview Plaza deserved to know about the paper’s decisions.
I told the council, “The newspaper should be as accountable as any other public institution.”
After I made my speech, I was immediately offered the position of City Photographer for Grandview Plaza. The position was available after Lynda Costello moved back to Illinois to be closer to her family.
The offer was confirmed through a unanimous vote by the council members.
The next day, City Clerk Janet Young told me the position was more of a hobby than a job. I will be paid $120 every three months to take pictures at special events, city council meetings and celebrations at Grandview Elementary School.
I accepted the position, which will allow me to continue doing the community journalism I enjoy, while I look for my next job.
I took notes during the meeting and plan to cover it just as I would have if I still worked for the paper. To be clear, I work for them now. My coverage will be as complete and accurate as ever, but keep that fact in mind.
Those posts should be up in the next few days.
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