Forbes ran a story citing research co-authored by finance professor Paul Gao, "Financing Dies in Darkness? The Impact of Newspaper Closures on Public Finance." Read the full story here.
Newspapers seem associated with increased control over local government fiscal responsibility. That means they are likely important to income inequality measures, because it would stand to reason a less efficient and fiscally sound government would have a more difficult time providing services and supporting strategies to combat systemic inequality. Local coverage through the Internet apparently isn't a substitute.