Layoffs and Reorganization at Morning Journal, News-Herald

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Yesterday didn't end so well at The Morning Journal and The News-Herald, Northeast Ohio's two Journal Register Co. properties.

A source tells Scene that several management-level staff members were either laid off or "forced" into retirement, such as Morning Journal Editor Tom Skoch, during a meeting yesterday afternoon.

Publisher Jeff Sudbrook, who oversees both newspapers, said that three Morning Journal copy desk employees will be leaving their posts and, in the end, moving to the News-Herald newsroom. "They'll be offered jobs over here," he says.

One city editor will remain to oversee reporting at both papers. All copy editors for both papers will work out of The News-Herald's Willoughby newsroom.

Sudbrook also adds that he and Skoch, 65, had been having ongoing discussions about the latter's retirement. "He's going to be very difficult to replace," Sudbrook says, adding that, in the near-term, he won't be replaced. Tricia Ambrose, editor of The News-Herald, will also step in on Morning Journal editing duties.

Ironically enough, the two papers were just named two of the best digital news ops in the state, per the Ohio Associated Press Media Editors Association.

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