It only took three months, but the Claremont Eagle-Times is back on New Hampshire newsstands.
Nearly two months ago, a Pennsylvania family-owned publishing company submitted a bid for the tiny-town paper, offering to pay a fraction of the nearly $4.6 million in debt the Times had managed to accrue. It looked promising, especially since the publishing company, Sample News Group, was willing to honor the nearly 8,000 existing subscriptions. But then there were a bunch of mishaps (objections from the U.S. Trustee’s office, possible lost deposits, inability to secure added bonuses including printing equipment, two vans and a telephone system), and the Times was forced to wait. A jumpstart local paper called the Compass, which scrambled to print its first edition a mere two weeks after the Times folded, looked like it would fill the void permanently.
But apparently, the paper reemerged from bankruptcy court on Monday to print its first edition since July 10. And though 62 employees were laid off when the paper folded, Sample News rehired 20 of them.
Not bad. Even if only a third got their jobs back, at least the lucky rehires weren’t forced to reapply for their jobs.