Times Mirror Co. said Thursday it will stop publishing the Evening Sun
in Baltimore on Sept. 15. In the most recent audit period, ended March 31, circulation for the Monday-to-Friday paper had dropped to 86,360 from 97,406 in the same period a year earlier. The morning sister publication, The Sun
, with circulation at 264,583, will be revamped in September, the company said. The announcement of the closing follows similar shutdowns of afternoon papers earlier this year in Milwaukee and Providence, R.I., as well as the closure of the Houston Post
in April. Shifting reader habits as well as skyrocketing newsprint price hikes were cited as reasons for the shutdowns. Newsprint prices are already 40% higher than a year ago, but the aggressive round of hikes may not be over. Several paper mills plan price hikes of 10% or more on Sept. 1.
The U.S. Senate, in a flurry of budget-related activity, heard two major tobacco and advertising-related proposals on Thursday. Sen. Tom Harkin (D., Iowa) urged the Senate go on record in favor of requiring tobacco companies to pay the Medicare and Medicaid costs of tobacco-related illnesses, but was defeated 68 to 31. A proposal from Sen. Bill Bradley (D., N.J.) urging the Senate go on record favoring eliminating the tax deduction for tobacco and pornographic products (which were not defined) was due for consideration.
The Audit Bureau of Circulations will make its debut on the World Wide Web on June 1. The site will offer general ABC information, CD-ROM product information and news. The audit bureau measures print periodical circulation for more than 4,200 members.