The Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times disclosed plans on Monday to reduce their staff by as many as a combined 250 jobs, the latest cutbacks in a newspaper industry reeling from a falloff in advertising and circulation.
The actions by Tribune Co's two largest dailies, which had been expected for months, came on top of earlier cutbacks by both papers.
The Times said it hoped to cut its staff of 2,625 by up to 150 employees, or nearly 6 percent.
The Chicago Tribune said it intends to trim its staff by as many as 100, or 3 percent.
The cuts are to be accomplished by a mix of closing vacant positions, attrition, buyouts and layoffs.
"The actions being undertaken at our newspapers reflect fundamental changes going on across the media industry," Tribune Co spokesman Gary Weitman said. "We cannot stand still; as revenues have slowed, our newspapers are scaling expenses accordingly."
Tribune said it will redeploy its resources to areas that can best generate growth, as it is now doing with Internet-focused ventures.
The Times said up to 70 jobs could be cut from the newspaper's news operations, which would reduce the newsroom staff to about 850 people.
The Times news operation employed about 1,200 at the time of its purchase by Tribune in 2000.
Chicago Tribune spokeswoman Christine Hennessey declined to say how many news positions could be affected or give the current number of newsroom jobs.
The cuts have been discussed for months and were not a result of Tribune Co's acceptance earlier this month of an US$8.2 billion buyout offer from real estate tycoon Sam Zell, Times publisher David Hiller said.
Times editor James O'Shea told employees Monday that he understood how they might be angry at the cost cuts, especially in light of bonuses that Tribune senior management will receive if the Zell buyout, which will take the company private, is approved later this year.
Tribune has set aside US$6.5 million in a bonus pool for 38 top executives once the deal is complete.
Tribune CEO Dennis FitzSimons chose not to participate in the bonus pool, but the company's chief financial officer will receive a US$600,000 bonus and Scott Smith, head of the newspaper division, will receive a US$400,000 bonus, the company has said.