Interesting battle in Pennsylvania that has implications everywhere. Legislation is pending to allow schools and governments to publish public notices on their own websites rather than requiring newspaper publication.

You can imagine the howls from the newspaper industry

While the newspaper advocates, which included a spokesman for the AARP, asked for the bill to be killed, a panel representing municipalities, counties and school boards threw its support behind the legislation to give local governments and school districts the option to publish legal notices on their own websites.

“If the newspapers were truly interested in performing a valuable community service, they would make legal ads available at reasonable prices, even free of charge, and display the notices prominently on their websites,” said Elam Herr, assistant executive director of the Pennsylvania Association of Township Supervisors.

Ronald Grutza, director of government affairs for the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs, called the request for these ads to run in newspapers “an outdated relic of the last century.”

He called it ironic that the print media is minimizing any kind of cost savings to local governments. “They are the first to hold our feet to the fire” over spending, he said.

What do you bet this is legislation Mark Biviano could get behind?