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Hearst Hires Haitz New Group Publisher Of CT Post–No Holiday Cheer Between Mayor And Paper

December 19th, 2013 · 14 Comments · Analysis and Comment, Media, News and Events

Henry Haitz

Henry Haitz. CT Post photo.

So how’s the Connecticut Post doing these days? If you happen to run into Mayor Bill Finch and ask him about the Connecticut Post don’t be surprised if the mayor bellows a few prehistoric noises. So it goes between mayor who questions the work of journalists who question his work. Things are a little prickly between the mayor’s office and Post scribes and editors. But hey, that’s the nature of the beast.

Hearst Connecticut Newspapers, owner of the Post, announced Thursday the hiring of Henry B. Haitz III as group publisher and president overseeing a network of media outlets including daily papers in Bridgeport, Danbury, Stamford and Greenwich and seven weeklies in Fairfield County. Haitz will oversee the operations side of the papers, according to this report.

Haitz won’t be heavily involved in the day-to-day reporting of news, but he will have say into how much will be spent on the news side in the cause of Hearst’s bottom line that impacts editorial coverage.

Most newspaper publishers these days occupy business, marketing and financial backgrounds and that’s the case with Haitz. In this world of corporate journalism, the days of scribes and editors becoming publishers are long over.

It’s always good to know the folks in charge of a publication. Next time you want to beg for coverage, praise coverage or complain about coverage at the Connecticut Post, a few names to keep in mind outside of scribes; co-managing editor Jack Alcott and Executive Editor Barbara Roessner. Hmmm, dare say a few conversations have taken place recently between hizzoner and Post editors.

See contact information for the CT Post here.

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14 Comments so far ↓

  • John Marshall Lee

    Welcome to a new face in the City! Publisher Henry Haitz III, welcome to the “land of steady habits.” Hope to get to know you better. If you are a financial person, we really need you in Bridgeport.
    I probably know a lot less about how Hearst papers are doing in Fairfield County than I do about City fiscal doings. That is probably as it should be inasmuch as my support of the CT Post may amount to several hundred dollars per year. My support of Bridgeport where my home is located is over $14,000 when it comes to property taxes. I read the Post, as it is, for the few moments of pleasure certain sections bring me. I spend much more time as a volunteer watchdog attempting to read and connect the numbers and stories about City governance.

    And that may be a reason why a publisher, the businessman in the media organization, may also look at Bridgeport more closely than formerly. The Post appears to own downtown property. With revaluation statistics out soon, will such balance sheet values decrease by 20-30% as is showing in some other nearby communities? That’s NOT GOOD news in any organization and represents a loss of value on paper.
    Yet, will property tax burdens increase? They may well do so unless much better oversight is provided to the Mayor’s budget this year and in future years. And that also might be BAD NEWS on the budget side for HHIII. Increased expenses in search of revenues to offset? Or a challenge to the profit&loss statement?

    And Publisher Haitz, don’t worry about relations with the Mayor’s office and the paper because you can continue to feature pictures of what passes for development in the City. You likely have some watchdog blood in you, anyway. But when you are curious about the fiscal side of Bridgeport, get to know Tom Sherwood, the current Director of the Office of Policy Management. He has been ‘overseeing’ financial process for over 20 years, from one seat or another. Ask him some questions if you see anything puzzling, refer to such statements as are available online from the City, and take a good look at the external audits, an annual exercise that is not shared in a public Q & A. You have been in enough communities to see a few reporting critical differences. We have kept some habits and slipped into some others that violate our City Charter, that sorely ignore City Ordinances and generally fly in the face of OPEN, ACCOUNTABLE and TRANSPARENT institutional process. How can you assist us in changing such poor habits? Time will tell.

  • Mojo

    *** Welcome to the CT Post and the City of Bpt, Henry! Hope your time and work here will be a “call them as you see them” reporter and publisher’s adventure-type experience. If you’re not familiar with this city, I recommend you read a local short story book by Lennie Grimaldi about this city’s past, so you can understand somewhat where this city appears to be today and its twisted path towards the future! It’s very important for “all” of this city’s taxpaying residents to once again have a newspaper that will make city government issues and what they mean transparent to the people. Bring the behind-closed-doors political and government issues out of the dark and into the light! *** WELCOME! ***

  • Local Eyes

    Publisher Haitz will not exert his influence until next year.
    While some people write posts to complete strangers, others choose to pontificate over the newspaper’s future. Don’t be surprised if the new publisher uses his financial background to determine Mayor Finch has the hardest job in Connecticut and thus steers editorial content in the Mayor’s direction.
    Hearst property in Bridgeport or operational contrasts within his new territory could lead him to draw the same conclusion.

    • John Marshall Lee

      Local Eyes,
      Printing equipment is taxed as well no matter how well located it is. If Bridgeport taxes increase that is not GOOD NEWS for a publisher.
      So it looks like you are saying such a publisher will ignore the paper’s self-interest in favor of a sympathy vote when he might determine Mayor Finch “has the hardest job in Connecticut.”
      My goodness, Local, if he really looks hard for the person carrying on in the “hardest job” it might mean he would feel sorry for Governor Malloy? Look at Governor Malloy, he can’t print money either and he has to support urban Mayors who run to him to fix their pension commitments, school systems and also lend a hand in other areas.
      Who has the hardest job, LE? Now about steering editorial content in the Mayor’s direction, isn’t that where it has been going anyway? The paper has not worked hard at investigative digging into areas harboring reasons for decreasing financial strength and that helps the Mayor. And I cannot remember the Post celebrating the noble property taxpayer, can you? Time will tell.

      • Local Eyes

        JML-
        Uh-uh. You’ve got me all wrong. Here’s what I mean:
        The decision to put the presses in Bridgeport was made long ago and remains in Hearst’s self interest. We all do that, right?
        But we don’t believe in sympathy votes around here and I hope Haitz doesn’t either. IMHO, Mayor Finch has the hardest job because of worse conditions. Besides, Malloy doesn’t face such a hostile crowd as Finch does here. Open Season without a license is a hunter’s dream and this blog has a fire-when-ready attitude.

  • Local Eyes

    Why are all Hearst Connecticut Newspapers printed in Bridgeport?
    Answer: it’s the best location.

    It might be read in Danbury but it was manufactured in Bridgeport and driven there by truck. Same thing in Stamford and Greenwich. Their paper originates in Bridgeport.

  • Jim Callahan

    This could be good news for Finchie. The new pub has a rep for messing around in the newsroom. Maybe the mayor can recreate the romance Ganim had with Dudley.

    And Local Eyes: the paper is printed in Bridgeport because it has the biggest and most modern presses.

  • Chosen 1

    If our city is so broke why are we hiring a Deputy Director of Public Facilities at $115,000? This makes no sense, “Only In Bridgeport.” Is this why the “Union” little people have to give back or get laid off? Who has a friend in need of six figures in the wallet?

  • Chosen 1

    Public Facilities Runs the BOE, or at least until the new BOE throws them out.
    Someone is trying to put a plant into the BOE to keep financial control. The CT Post ad said to send resumes to Civil Service not to Human Resources, which means it’s rigged.

  • Mojo

    *** Bottom spending line is most of the money comes from the city side and it’s broken out to all the different dept pieces of the city’s budget. If the city does the in-house services for the school system and city (public facilities), then who do you think the deputy director of P/F will actually be working for? If the city’s P/F can take over and control the school system’s custodial and maint. depts, it has more control over spending in that area and its workers! *** Slowly they turn, step by step, inch by inch, ’til ??? ***

  • Mojo

    *** BOTTOM LINE IS THE CITY OF BPT’s SCHOOLS SYSTEM AND BOE’s BUDGET SHOULD BE “COMPLETELY INDEPENDENT” OF THE CITY-SIDE BUDGET; WITH THE CITY BEING ONLY BUDGET RESPONSIBLE FOR THE IN-KIND SERVICES AND SCHOOL SECURITY. WITH THE REST OF THE SCHOOL’s BUDGET COMING FROM THE STATE AND FEDS AND ENTIRELY CONTROLLED BY THE BPT SCHOOLS SYSTEM YET OVERSEEN BY THE STATE AND FEDS! ***

  • Chosen 1

    One person is controlling both sides, no one is sure who that is. It was Charles Carroll and still could be.
    The job is a rig job to keep a finger in the pie and a friend of a friend slipped in while we give back $2,000,000 of our minuscule paychecks.

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