Newspaper: Tubes used for unapproved fliers
JANESVILLE Local newspaper tubes are again being used for political purposes without approval.
Fliers opposing the Green Tier program showed up in Janesville Messenger tubes over the weekend.
The Janesville City Council has heard from residents who oppose the proposed adoption of the state's Green Tier Legacy program.
Unlike fliers that were inserted into Gazette tubes without Gazette approval earlier this year, this one is signed.
The fliers state they were "Produced by Taxpayers for Responsible Government." They list a Janesville post office box, 2821, and an email address, trb2012@
Bliss Communications owns both the Messenger and The Gazette. Gazette Circulation Manager Lon Haenel on Monday sent an email asking the organization to stop using the company's newspaper tubes.
It was unknown how many fliers were distributed. One man said he saw fliers in tubes around his east-side address, but a friend a few blocks away did not receive one. The Gazette also received a report from a west-side resident.
A Gazette reporter sent the group an email Monday afternoon but received no immediate reply.
The flier states that an open-records request sent to the city was denied.
Paul Lembrich of Janesville, who has spoken against the Green Tier proposal, recently submitted an open-records request, asking for copies of all communications among city officials related to Green Tier and related matters since Jan. 1, 2009.
Lembrich could not be reached for comment Monday.
The unsigned fliers earlier this year urged residents to move their children out of local public schools and generally took an anti-government tone. The Gazette discovered that the unsigned fliers were tied to a Milwaukee-based conservative group, Citizens for Responsible Government.
A representative of the Milwaukee group said at the time that the fliers were distributed by local residents, but it would not identify them.
Some people who objected to the school fliers accused The Gazette of a political agenda and threatened to drop their subscriptions.
Dan Pyfer, general manager of Community Shoppers, which produces the Messenger, said it's fairly common for political fliers to show up in newspaper tubes of the Stateline News, a sister publication.
Pyfer said he sends bills to the groups for using the newspaper's resources for their advertising.