News-Bulletin to start publishing once a week in April

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The Valencia County News-Bulletin and its sister paper El Defensor Chieftain in Socorro will soon be moving to a one-time-per-week publishing cycle. The new weekly publication day will be Thursdays.

The threat of losing Saturday mail due to insolvency of the United States Postal Service, some cost savings and more emphasis on digital offerings are contributing factors to the timing of this move.

The effective start dates will be Thursday, April 4, for the News-Bulletin and Thursday, March 21, for the Chieftain.

"In most cases, advertisers were buying one edition per week and getting a shelf life of three days," said Dave Puddu, publisher of both newspapers. "Now, they will get seven days shelf life for the same rate. We will not be raising our advertising rates."

Both newspapers will continue to push for people to subscribe, which will be the only way to guarantee delivery, he said.

"We will also embark on more opportunities online and mobile," the publisher said. "Our yearly subscription rates will remain the same."

Public notices, pre-prints and obituaries will not be impacted by this move. Both newspapers will also be offering more special sections throughout the year.

"We will continue to do what no one else does — provide unique, local content that's fair, accurate, objective, timely and complete to our readers who depend on us to stay informed and engaged," Puddu said. "To do this, we need the support of our advertisers and subscribers."

In the meantime, the staff at the News-Bulletin is planning a redesign of the newspaper, said editor Clara Garcia, and will be accommodating more breaking news updates on the newspaper's website, www.news-bulletin.com.

"We're not getting smaller in ways that are important to our readers," said Garcia. "We will continue our 103-year-old tradition of reporting on the significant and relevant news of Valencia County, along with sharing the milestones of our friends and neighbors."

Rita Garcia, the News-Bulletin's advertising director, said the newspaper is looking forward to adding more to the core product through special editions and features that readers and advertisers can participate in.

"Hopefully, it will make our community newspaper a thicker, more enjoyable newspaper," Rita Garcia said. "We've added several items to our yearly calendar, such as spring sports, fall sports and winter sports previews, a parenting edition, "Best of Valencia County" readers' choice and a year in review.

"Many of our subscribers and advertisers mention how much they enjoy having the Valencia County News-Bulletin in our market, and we sure appreciate their support — it's crucial in times like these."