Newspaper Owner Western Communications Declares Chapter 11

Western Communications, owner of the 56,000-circulation Bend (Ore.) Bulletin and more papers in Oregon and California, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

A Klamath Falls Herald and News (not owned by Western) article said that Western Communications planned to continue operating normally as it seeks better payment terms on an $18 million loan with Bank of America.

Chairwoman Betsy McCool said that to meet the bank’s demands, the company would have to “wreck all our newspapers” and lay off “mass quantities of people, and we’re not going to do that.”

A bank spokeswoman said that Bank of America has “tried to work with The Bulletin and help resolve their financial issues, including giving them some more time,” but wouldn’t comment further.

In addition to the Bend Bulletin, Western Communications publishes seven newspapers across Oregon and California.