Expanded state government reporting comes to Oregon

SALEM — A news collaborative to sharpen and expand coverage of Oregon state government and politics has launched, combining the strengths of three news organizations.

The new team represents Pamplin Media Group, publisher of the Portland Tribune and 24 other newspapers, EO Media Group, which publishes The Daily Astorian, East Oregonian and nine other newspapers, and Salem Reporter, a digital news service.

A reporter from each organization has been assigned to the Oregon Capital Bureau operation. They are Paris Achen of the Portland Tribune, Claire Withycombe of the East Oregonian and The Daily Astorian, and Aubrey Wieber of Salem Reporter. They will work under the direction of Les Zaitz, editor of Salem Reporter and a veteran investigative reporter.

“This collaboration will dramatically boost our in-depth coverage of state government,” said Pamplin Media Group President Mark Garber. “We already were partnering with EO Media Group to provide timely and comprehensive stories about the Legislature, the executive branch and state agencies. Now, by adding Salem Reporter, we will increase the number of journalists watching the capital and also benefit enormously from Les Zaitz’s journalistic leadership.”

“Throughout its 110-year history the EO Media Group has been committed to quality journalism,” said Heidi Wright, the group’s chief operating officer. “That commitment led us to our original collaboration with Pamplin Media Group to provide our readers with important stories other news outlets had abandoned. This coverage has never been more vital and the resources Salem Reporter brings to the effort will increase the value of this coverage to our readers.”

“News organizations across the state have whittled away at their coverage of state government, leaving citizens with less information than ever before. By combining forces, we give Oregonians the largest news team in the state focused exclusively on state government. We intend to be a potent watchdog over public money and government power,” said Zaitz.

The new Oregon Capital Bureau team will provide breaking news, enterprise and investigative stories. The bureau’s stories will be shared with each of the news organization’s publications and their websites, providing an unprecedented statewide reach. This collaborative also produces Oregon Capital Insider e-newsletter, delivered weekly to over 84,000 subscribers.