Dallas-based Belo Corp. told its employees this morning (Nov. 15) at Fox affiliate KMSB 11 and KTTU 18 that it is shutting down most of the local operations of both stations and will transfer those operations to KOLD 13, which is owned by Raycom Media.
The only Tucson employees who will remain with Belo are those in sales. All other Belo jobs - in news, production, engineering and management - will be eliminated.
As part of the new arrangement, KOLD will produce newscasts for KMSB and provide all of the engineering support. That will mean some of the current Belo employees in Tucson could be interviewed and qualified for jobs that will open at KOLD as part of the new arrangement.
The studios and offices of KMSB and KTTU, at 1855 N. Sixth Ave., will be vacated. The sales staff most likely will relocate to KOLD's facility at 7831 N. Business Park Drive, Marana.
Paul McTear, president and CEO of Raycom Media, said similar arrangements, which are called a shared services agreements, have taken place in other TV markets and will allow KOLD to continue to offer a level of news coverage that otherwise couldn't be sustained in light of the current economics of the TV industry.
Among the changes, all of KMSB and KTTU programming will be upgraded to high definition.
The transition is expected to take place within the next 90 to 120 days, according to McTear.
Read more about the transition in Inside Tucson Business on Friday.