Discussion Points for a Conversation or Letter with Policymakers
- I respectfully request your urgent assistance on a matter that will have a severe impact on our newspaper and, as a result, our local community.
- The Department of Commerce recently announced countervailing and anti-dumping duties on Canadian imports of newsprint. These duties range as high as 32 percent.
- The sole petitioner seeking protection is North Pacific Paper Company (NORPAC), a single mill in Washington state that is owned by a New York–based hedge fund.
- No other U.S. newsprint mills have supported NORPAC, and its petitions are opposed by the American Forest and Paper Industry. Why? The rest of the industry knows that these tariffs will cause damage to newspapers and ultimately reduce the demand for newsprint.
- Historically, advertising revenue supported the newspaper. The recession and market forces have cut our print ad revenues in half over the last 10 years. With less print advertising, newspapers are using less newsprint. In fact, the demand for newsprint in North America has declined by 75 percent since 2000. The decline in the newsprint market is not caused by any unfair trade.
- Since these tariffs have been announced and collected at the border, newspapers have experienced price increases of 20–30 percent. Publishers are not able to absorb these costs. We will have to consider raising prices on readers and advertisers, cutting back on news distribution and reducing our workforce. Not only will newspapers suffer, but so will our workers, readers and advertisers.
- The International Trade Commission (ITC) can stop this newsprint trade case. We need your help. Please testify or submit a letter to the ITC expressing your concern that these tariffs will cost jobs and hurt your constituents. Other policymakers are mobilizing in opposition to these tariffs. Paul Boyle, at the News Media Alliance, can discuss how you can get engaged either on your own or with other elected officials.
- We would greatly appreciate you standing up for our readers and our workers on this issue. Thank you for your consideration of our views.
For more information please contact Paul Boyle, Senior Vice President, Public Policy, News Media Alliance (571-366-1150; firstname.lastname@example.org)