Over the last few weeks an issue has arisen with the Berthoud Board of Trustees regarding this publication. Certain members of the board have initiated a movement to have the Berthoud Weekly Surveyor removed as Berthoud’s newspaper of record and replaced with the Loveland Reporter Herald.
As we wrote in this space last week, the Surveyor is Berthoud’s No. 1 source for news. And we have the numbers to back it up. We are the only paper on God’s green earth that exclusively covers Berthoud − everything from town government to high school sports and everything in between.
The Loveland Reporter-Herald is Loveland’s paper, with an office in Berthoud, that occasionally writes a story about Berthoud.
The Surveyor has been this town’s newspaper of record for the better part of a decade.
What is a paper of record? What does it mean to be one?
It’s quite simple. A newspaper of record is defined as a widely available newspaper that has been authorized by a government, via official statute, to publish public and legal notices for a specified geographical area. A further definition expands to include a newspaper whose newsgathering, reporting and editorializing operations are exclusively focused on that specified area.
The Surveyor checks every one of those boxes. The Loveland Reporter-Herald does not.
The total Thursday circulation for the Loveland Reporter Herald 7,103, representing an 8% saturation rate for the combined populations of Loveland and Berthoud (85,392 according to the world population report website). Total Thursday circulation for the Surveyor is just over 2,150, including online-only subscribers, representing a saturation rate of 27%. The Surveyor prints and distributes one copy for every four homes in Berthoud each week. The Surveyor has 12 racks located all over town as well as copies available at Hays Market.
Furthermore, it is far more expensive to subscribe to the Loveland Reporter Herald. With the Surveyor’s annual subscription rate of $37 for in zip code, the Surveyor costs its subscribers $0.71/edition. An annual subscription to the Loveland Reporter-Herald will set you back $421.20, $0.87 per issue, or 25% more than the Surveyor. If you’re buying a single copy at a newsstand, the Loveland Reporter-Herald will cost you twice a much ($1.50) than will the Berthoud Surveyor ($0.75).
Fact, the Berthoud Weekly Surveyor is more widely available in Berthoud than is the Loveland Reporter-Herald and at a significantly lower cost.
What about newsgathering, reporting and editorializing operations?
The Surveyor has the Loveland Reporter-Herald lapped regarding Berthoud news and information in this area as well. We are committed, connected and informed about Berthoud.
Someone from the Surveyor attends and reports on every meeting of the Berthoud Board of Trustees. The Loveland Reporter-Herald does not.
Frequently the Surveyor reports on meetings of the Berthoud Planning Commission and the Berthoud PORT Committee. The Loveland Reporter-Herald never does.
We promote Berthoud citizens and businesses in a positive way by writing about them and promoting them. The Loveland Reporter-Herald very rarely does that.
Since the beginning of the school year in August, the Loveland Reporter-Herald has written three stories on Berthoud High School (BHS) sports and all three games came against Loveland schools’ teams. They published another that originally appeared in the Longmont Times-Call as it involved BHS versus Longmont’s Silver Creek. In the same time frame, the Surveyor has written 27 full stories on BHS sports and honored nine of our town’s young people as Athletes of the Week. Fact.
We share all posts from the town and from Berthoud Parks & Rec on Facebook to our readers. The Loveland Reporter-Herald does not.
We meet with Town Administrator Chris Kirk on a regular basis to find out what he would like citizens to know. We recently wrote the story about the dog park after meeting with Kirk and Parks and Recreation Director Jeremy Olinger. Fact.
Because we attend the meetings and are heavily engaged, we have found errors in legal notices and notified the town so they can be corrected. The Loveland Reporter-Herald doesn’t do that.
Speaking of legal notices, at last week’s regular meeting of the town board, Trustee Brian Laak stated he does not even know what a legal notice is. Said Laak, “Uh, what’s the typical legal notice? I have to admit, uh, that I see them, but I never read them. What is it? We, uh, have a contract to build, uh, a uh, a public works building or are they very pressing, what is it, is it a hold over, from, uh, the good old days?”
This week, those legal notices can be found on page three of this publication, Mr. Laak, take a peak and educate yourself. They can also be found, for free, and not behind a subscribers’ only pay wall, every week on our website at http://berthoudsurveyor.com/category/community-news/legals/.
For the record, we don’t have anything against the Loveland Reporter-Herald. There are a lot of good, hard-working people there; this isn’t an us-versus-them editorial. Our point is the Loveland Reporter-Herald is not Berthoud’s newspaper. The Berthoud Weekly Surveyor is Berthoud’s newspaper. Fact.
Last week in this space we asked the town board what they’re afraid of. This week we are simply stating it is clear as day certain members of the board are more interested in holding a personal vendetta against this local business than they are in finding the best ways to serve the Berthoud community.
Berthoud deserves better. Shame on them.
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