In part, from The Rural Blog, a publication of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues
Community Newspaper Holdings Inc., one of the country’s largest owners of community newspapers, announced Wednesday that it had been acquired by the Retirement Systems of Alabama; the financial details weren’t announced. Both are headquartered in Montgomery, because CHNI has been owned by RSA for most of its 20-year history.
CNHI, which has 68 dailies and more than 40 non-dailies in 22 states, became a subsidiary of Raycom Media Inc. in September 2017. In June 2018, Raycom sold its television stations to Gray Television., which said it did not want to own newspapers and would sell CHNI as a whole or in pieces. RSA is the chief creditor of Raycom and CNHI.
CNHI publications in Kentucky include The Daily Independent, Ashland; Richmond Register; Corbin Times Tribune; Somerset Commonwealth Journal; Glasgow Daily Times; London Sentinel Echo; Morehead News; Greenup County News Times; Grayson Journal Enquirer; Olive Hill Times; and, Wayne County Outlook.
It was founded in 1997 by Ralph Martin and originally headquartered on Vine Street in downtown Lexington.
RSA administers the pension fund for state employees in Alabama, and has made a number of non-traditional investments in golf courses and hotels. “Those who are concerned about accountability journalism and ownership of newspapers in this country should be pleased at this development,” said Al Cross, director of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues, publisher of The Rural Blog. “CNHI has a history of supporting strong journalism in its communities and providing statehouse news coverage, which has been declining for years in most states.”