It’s not exactly rising from the ashes, but the Phoenix is back in its nest.
After being turfed from its office on the UBCO campus in Kelowna last summer by the student union, the school’s campus newspaper has moved back into the space it occupied prior to the “re-allocation” of space in the UNC building in August.
News editor Alex Barberis said the return was made possible after the paper balanced its budget.
The Phoenix, largely supported by a media fee charged to UBCO students, had run up a deficit of approximately $16,000 prior to its removal from campus. A deal the newspaper through it had with the student union to cover its $8,000 rent for the office space was not signed by the student union despite the newspaper thinking it had been accepted.
During its exile from the campus, the Phoenix was produced from the living room of a former editor’s apartment in Rutland.
Described as “not being ideal,” the paper nonetheless continued to publish and as a result of presenting a balanced budget for this year, was allowed to return to its former office space in the UNC building at the end of November.
Barberis said to balance the budget some cuts had to be made including dropping two of the 14 issues it normally publishes during the school year and reducing the honorariums paid to Phoenix staffers.
“We’re just glad to be back on campus,” she said.
But while the newspaper is back in its former office, the space is now a little more cramped. That’s because it now has to share the space with the UBCO radio club, which has launched a radio station on North Kelowna campus.
It will get a small share the media fee,said Barberis.
The Phoenix will receive about $37,000 of the $44,000 the media fee will bring in this year, with the rest going to the radio club.
The club’s cut of the fee has enabled it to buy a sound board for the new UBCO radio station.
Meanwhile, the Phoenix is planning to publish 12 editions during the current school year, said its news editor, three of which have been produced since its return to its campus office in late November.