Media Watch

Stuff at the 'Star'

Tucson's morning daily has undergone its share of spring changes. On the state political-beat front, C.J. Karamargin has jumped ship. Karamargin covered the state Legislature, but recently opted for a position as a food critic with the Tucson Citizen.

"C.J. is a good journalist, and he will do great work in his new position at the Tucson Citizen," Star Metro Editor Hipolito R. Corella said.

While the move leaves a void in the Star's current coverage of the Capitol, Corella says the newspaper is searching for a replacement. The post will be filled by a reporter based in Phoenix.

Meanwhile, James Martinez has been promoted to night editor. Martinez is a six-year veteran of the metro desk. Assistant Managing Editor Chuck Kramer officially retires at the end of the month. Reader Advocate Debbie Kornmiller and Assistant Managing Editor Victor Vaughan are helping to fill the void.


There are problems at the top for Tucson's eclectic community radio station, KXCI 91.3 FM. Former General Manager Larry Bruce and the station parted ways a couple of weeks ago. Membership Outreach Director Randy Peterson is taking over on an interim basis. The search for a replacement is underway.


Gannett Pacific Publications wrapped up distribution of AZ Health Tucson in March, and rumblings are that The Foothills magazine and Oro Valley might be in dire straits as well. At the very least, restructuring is in the works. Oro Valley has struggled since its inception in December.


According to figures obtained by the Tucson Weekly, Arizona Daily Star circulation numbers registered a slight increase for March over the same time a year ago--but Sunday performance slipped.

Overall, the Star's paid daily circulation as of March stands at 116,460. That's a boost of 757 over the same period a year before. However, it doesn't match the increase accumulated between 2004 and 2005, when the publication jumped by just less than 2,000 in that 12-month window.

Home delivery reached 90,867 and has increased at a rate of about 200 in each of the past two years.

From there, the numbers aren't so good. Single-copy weekday sales were recorded at 15,739, a dip of 863 from the same period last year.

Sunday was even worse. The Star had total sales of 176,863. That's down nearly 2,500 when compared to March 2005. Sunday home delivery figures checked in at 121,997, down 2,257 since 2005 and 3,609 when compared to 2004.

The pre-redesign Tucson Citizen's slide continued. Its March circulation figure was 28,248, down 3,309 since 2005, a decrease of slightly more than 5,000 in just two years.