Some big changes are coming to The Courier-Herald.
First and foremost, as of May, we will no longer be covering the city of Bonney Lake.
It was a decision that was hard to make, but one every newspaper staff member felt was necessary in order to continue serving our root communities — Enumclaw, Buckley, and Black Diamond — with a quality, hyper-local newspaper and trustworthy journalism.
The newspaper business, and by extension, the journalism trade, has shifted rapidly over the last two decades, especially in regard to how newspapers continue to operate and how modern society receives information. We expect to be able to dive into a constant stream of information at our leisure, and to do so free of charge, but these expectations are antithetical to trustworthy journalism.
The Courier-Herald is blessed to have had strong community support since the early 1900s, and we hoped that same support could be found in Bonney Lake and Sumner when the paper expanded in 2003. That is not to say we did not receive any support from the city’s business community, government, and school district — quite the contrary, and we want to thank everyone who has financially supported the paper in any form. Unfortunately, due to the rising cost of running a newspaper, there just hasn’t been enough in recent years to sustain city coverage.
The Courier-Herald will also be transitioning to a paid subscription newspaper. We are aware that some of our loyal readers have been enjoying a free copy of their local newspaper for years, but for only $39 a year — or less than $1 per issue — you may continue to enjoy the same service you and your family have come to rely on.
In fact, we aim to improve our service. Many of our readers are unaware our carriers are independent contractors who work at least one other full-time job. Some of the revenue earned from paid subscriptions will be going to carriers who make sure your newspaper is delivered right to your doorstop every week, dry and ready to read (our more rural readers may have to pay an extra fee to have their paper mailed to them).
A subscription will also give readers unlimited access to www.courierherald.com while a number of free articles will be available to readers every month.
Finally, The Courier-Herald will be moving from our office on Cole Street to one on Myrtle Avenue — we’ll be in our same building, just in a smaller office.
With these changes, we can focus more resources on issues that affect Enumclaw, Buckley, and Black Diamond. This will mean more city council and school district news, but we hope to bring back more entertaining news as well — you’ll see the return of the police blotter, and we want to expand coverage of our area’s history and heritage by digging into our collection of historical bound editions. We also want to increase our focus on the growing business scene, and give regular coverage to those people and organizations whose goal it is to serve the community.
The future of our communities, and of our country, is constantly in motion — there’s no real knowing what’s around the corner. But whatever it may be, there will always be a need for quality reporting, and we strongly believe a physical newspaper will continue to not only be a valuable community pillar, but one of the best mediums we have for providing public education, holding the powerful accountable, and helping spur positive change and critical thought.
Thanks to you, The Courier-Herald has brought those values to the Plateau for the last 100 years, and with these adjustments and your continued support, we believe we’ll be around for 100 more.
Editor Ray Miller-Still can be contacted at 360-802-8220 or firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions, comments or concerns.