It appears that the Gainesville Times may be preparing to move its Hoschton-based weekly newspaper out of the town. The firm has recently applied for a second class postal permit and has been trying to sell subscriptions in Jefferson while cutting back on its free newsrack distribution.
It has also began doing two editions, one geared for the Jefferson market and a slightly different front page for the Braselton-Hoschton area. And the firm recently moved its mailing address to a PO box, an indication it may be laying the groundwork to give up its physical office in Hoschton.
The Times began its weekly paper in Hoschton at the same time our firm began the Braselton News as an extension of The Jackson Herald in 2005. That was at the heyday of the building boom and since then, the Braselton-Hoschton retail and real estate market has fallen on hard times.
With its increasing focus on reporting in the Jefferson area, it appears as if the Times may abandon Hoschton for an office in the county seat to go head to head with The Herald. Earlier efforts to push The Times daily paper into the Jefferson market failed.
Jackson County is a battleground between three large corporate daily newspaper chains — Athens (owned by one Morris group); Gainesville (owned by the other Morris chain); and Gwinnett (owned by another large chain.)