Newspaper Bailout Legislation Proposed

03.25.09 | FL News Team

The nation's financially ailing newspapers may be the next to be bailed out by the federal government. Democratic Senator Benjamin Cardin of Maryland has introduced a measure that seeks to allow newspaper companies to be set up as nonprofit corporations. The legislation would also give struggling newspapers a variety of tax breaks.

Although Cardin asserts his bill would protect free speech by throwing newspapers a financial lifeline, papers that take advantage of nonprofit status would not be allowed to make political endorsements. 

Under the so-called Newspaper Revitalization Act, newspapers could operate as nonprofit companies for educational purposes and would have a status similar to that of public broadcasters. Cardin says his legislation is aimed primarily at helping local and small town newspapers, not big conglomerates.