Belo's KMSB-KTTU Tucson is outsourcing its local news production to rival KOLD, as the Fox-MyNetworkTV duo has entered into a shared services agreement with the Raycom-owned station.
"KMSB and KTTU will continue to control, manage and program the stations and sell all on-air advertising," a Belo spokesperson said in an email. "KOLD will, by contract, provide certain services to support the operations of KMSB and KTTU, including producing local news in high definition, in-depth weather, traffic and sports, and website administration."
"This agreement will help Belo better serve its Tucson viewers," added the spokesperson, "and improve the local programming provided by our Tucson stations."
The Tucson Sentinel previously reported the arrangement, and said 40-50 staffers will lose their jobs. Belo did not comment on that figure. KOLD will produce 7-9 a.m. and 9 p.m. newscasts for KMSB starting Feb. 1, said the Sentinel. Some staffers may be offered jobs at KOLD.
KMSB took 14% of the TV revenue in Tucson last year, according to BIA/Kelsey. Tucson dropped from DMA No. 67 to No. 70 in the most recent Nielsen rankings, amidst the considerable economic challenges in the southwest.