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Fear Not, Startlegram-ers! Dean Singleton Says He Ain't Coming Home.

William Dean Singleton
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Journalists love to gossip -- so much easier than picking up a phone. And word around the anxious Fort Worth Star-Telegram newsroom is that the budget-slashing McClatchy Company is making such deep cuts over there -- 130 staffers are losing their jobs, 50 of those from the newsroom alone -- so it can offload the paper. (The Miami Herald was the hardest-hit of the company's papers, losing 250 jobs.) And not only that, but the rumors have the paper going to none other than local boy Dean Singleton -- infamous around these parts for having buried The Fort Worth Press and The Houston Post and performing the last rites over the Dallas Times Herald.

Only, not so fast. The Graham native, when reached by Unfair Park this afternoon, says: "That's nothing more than a rumor. There's nothing to that."

The vice chairman and chief executive officer of Media News Group, which owns the likes of The Denver Post, St. Paul Pioneer Press and The Salt Lake Tribune, says not only does he have no interest, but, far as he knows, McClatchy isn't looking to sell the Star-Telegram. Course, he can see how the rumor got started ...

"It's home, and I love the Star-Telegram," he says. "I started carrying it when I was 8 years old and have always loved it. But that's just not in the cards. I don't think McClatchy is gong to divest newspapers anyway. Now, we could wake up tomorrow and find they are, but I haven't heard that. And even if they were ... I'd be surprised if they were going to sell the Star-Telegram -- it's a solid newspaper. But I've never had discussions about it and don't plan to.

"We're pretty occupied right now. In today's environment, we'll be doing well to run the ones we have. We're not looking for any expansion, certainly during this downturn. So feel free to put that rumor to rest." Done. --Robert Wilonsky

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