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COLUMN: Comments on newspaper merger

Last week, we announced the merger of the Perham Enterprise Bulletin and the New York Mills Herald--with the first edition of the combined newspapers planned for Oct. 1.

We invited comments from our readers, and will continue to encourage input--positive or negative--on the new, regional newspaper. Please email; or comment online, at our webpage. You can also mail your comments to Perham Enterprise Bulletin or New York Mills Herald, Box 288, Perham, MN 56573.

Printed here are a few excerpts from comments we've received so far.

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"It's a sad day when a community loses its local paper. I grew up in New York Mills and it is because of the New York Mills Herald and the work the Partas (Mike and Jan, former Herald and Enterprise Bulletin publishers) did that drove my decision to go into the newspaper business.

I am currently the publisher and editor of a small newspaper in Southern Minnesota. I understand the business side of the decision of Forum Communications. My newspaper has gone from a staff of six to a bare bones staff of three. But one thing has not changed and that is that the community still has a paper.

Mr. Hoglund talks about the animosity between New York Mills and Perham - it's true - there has always been a sibling rivalry of sorts between the communities. It would be interesting to know how those who live in Perham feel about the merger.

I wish everyone at this East Ottertail paper success. It is too bad that both NYM and Perham are losing a piece of who they are.

My advice to readers in both communities is that if you want to see the same type of news in your new paper is to take an active roll in your paper by emailing or calling with events in your communities, submit photos and offer story ideas. If the paper is as short staffed as my newspaper is, they will appreciate your efforts."

Stephanie H., Kasota, MN

"I think Mills loses BIG time in this one. What used to be the heart of the community (the Herald) has gradually went downhill since the Forum buyout.

It's hard to have a quality newspaper when:

1. The owner doesn't live in town;

2. Production is done in another town, and;

3. The "big business" dollar trumps what is important to the community.

Nicole W. Center Point, TX

Change is hard, even for something good. Changing jobs, moving to a new city, having a baby. Change is hard. This merge means the communities still have one newspaper as opposed to no newspaper. But change is hard.

Karen K., Ottertail