Council Votes to Approve Courier’s Legal Advertising Bid

The Beverly Hills City Council unanimously awarded the Fiscal Year 2021/22 Legal Advertising and Notices Bid to the Beverly Hills Courier at a July 27 study session.

The Council also voted to require the city’s three adjudicated newspapers – papers legally authorized to publish legal advertising for a designated area – to place most legal notices and display ads in the first ten pages of each paper. 

A Staff Report had floated the notion that the papers be required to place city ads and notices in the first 10% of the paper. But the publishers protested that this was unrealistic. 

“This year, there’s talk about 10 percent,” said Courier Publisher Lisa Bloch at the July 27 Study Session meeting. “Because of COVID, we’ve been averaging 20 to 24 pages. Ten percent is two pages. That means the front page, and page two. That automatically affects our premium – our ability to lock in a premium price for page two.”

Councilmembers agreed that 10% would be unrealistic, and the idea went no further.

The Council voted unanimously to accept the Courier’s bid, while contracting with the two other adjudicated newspapers at their requested rates. In years past, two papers competed, and the city assigned rates of 65% of the winning bid to the runner-up.

The Council selected the Courier over the two competitors due to the Courier’s superior circulation both in and around Beverly Hills, as well as estimated rates of readership and return (the number of customers who actually read the paper or return it). 

Staff recommended the Courier “because it is the most cost-effective pricing per reader with the highest circulation within Beverly Hills between the three newspapers.”

“We at the Courier are very grateful and honored that the staff has recommended us for the bid once again,” Bloch said. “We very much appreciate our partnership with the City of Beverly Hills.” 

“We’re fortunate to have three papers that do cover us,” said Mayor Robert Wunderlich. “We want a sense of equity in terms of how we distribute our advertising.” 

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