EL PASO, Texas (AP) _ The El Paso Herald-Post, the largest afternoon daily newspaper in Texas, will publish its last edition Saturday, The E.W. Scripps Co. announced today.

Scripps said the decision to close the Herald-Post came because of a continuing decline in circulation, which was down to 18,000 daily, compared to more than 31,000 about 10 years ago.

``Sadly, the Herald-Post's continuing and dramatic circulation decline left Scripps with no choice but to face reality,'' said Alan M. Horton, Scripps' vice president for newspapers.

The Herald-Post has 35 editorial employees. Some may be given jobs at other Scripps newspapers, but that will depend on openings said Rich Boehne, a company spokesman.

Non-newsroom employees will keep their jobs because they also work for the larger El Paso Times, whose owner, Gannett Co., had a joint operating agreement with Scripps. The contract between the two newspaper groups had been scheduled to run until 2015. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The Herald-Post traces its roots to the El Paso Herald, which published its first edition in 1881. Scripps began publishing the El Paso Post in 1922. Scripps bought The Herald in 1931 and combined the newspapers.

Scripps operates daily newspapers in 16 markets, including El Paso.

In May, Scripps reached a $775 million deal with the San Antonio-based Harte Hanks Communications Inc., which gives Scripps five daily newspapers in Texas and radio and television stations in San Antonio.