Local Journalism Sustainability Act 

      1024 1024 34th Democrats

      Adopted by the membership at the August 10, 2022 meeting.

      A Resolution Calling for Passage of the Local Journalism Sustainability Act 

      Whereas the first amendment of the United States Constitution protects freedom of speech and of the press, cementing the importance of these rights to the foundation of this nation; and

      Whereas the former president, like autocrats before him tried to erode that foundation by characterizing the press as an “enemy of the people,” thereby threatening the continuation and viability of our democracy; and

      Whereas local newspapers, an important investigative and communicative resource for communities, both urban and rural, in this country, have been losing readership and advertising, which are primary financial resources supporting publication and staffing; and

      Whereas Senator Cantwell’s office released a report stating that over the last 20 years the local newspaper industry has lost approximately 70% of its total revenue and newspapers have let go of more than 40,000 journalists accounting for 60% of the journalistic workforce; and

      Whereas the Local Journalism Sustainability Act (LJSA), introduced by Senator Cantwell in the Senate and Representatives Kirkpatrick and Newhouse in the House (H.R.3940), is an effort to stabilize and reverse these losses by providing local media with tax incentives that support subscribers, advertisers and hiring of reporters, in total estimated to cost about $1.67 billion over ten years; and 

      Whereas, in a floor speech, Senator Cantwell stated, “The tax incentives in this bill will help local newspapers and digital-only news journalists, and broadcast newsrooms remain financially viable to retain and hire local base journalists to cover local news stories;”

      Now therefore be it resolved the 34th District Democrats thank Senator Cantwell for her leadership on this important issue and urge passage of the Local Journalism Sustainability Act by the US Congress; and

      Be it further resolved copies of this resolution be distributed broadly to members of Congress and specifically to Washington State Representatives and Senators.

      Submitted by Ann Martin, member of the Resolutions Committee.