Resolve To Protect Public Media In 2017

With a new administration and Congress now in office, the future of federal funding for public broadcasting is once again being called into question.

A strong, diverse base of grassroots advocates is essential to ensuring the retention of federal funding. To that end, KNKX is a proud partner in Protect My Public Media, a collaboration of local public radio and TV stations, program producers and distributors, listeners and viewers who support a strong public media in the United States. You can help by resolving to keep KNKX and public media stations across the country strong in 2017. Please visit Protect My Public Media today and sign up for updates.

What We Know Now

  • Funding for the current fiscal year, FY2017, has been distributed to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), and first payments have been made to stations around the country. As a newly independent station, KNKX was just awarded a grant from the CPB.
  • The appropriation for the CPB is booked two years in advance, which is designed to provide a buffer between funding and changes in the political climate. Therefore, funding has been secured for FY2018 and FY2019, but has not yet been distributed. Technically, these appropriations could be rescinded, but it would take a big act of Congress to make that happen.
  • Annual funding for the CPB has been level at $445 million for several years. That amounts to about $1.35 per American per year.

We are keeping a close eye on these developments and will update you as we learn more.

FAQ

How much CPB funding does KNKX receive?

KNKX has been awarded $500,000 from the CPB for FY17, which represents roughly 7 percent of the KNKX annual budget. 

What would happen if KNKX lost CPB funding?

CPB funding continues to be an important part of our funding mix. At KNKX, we feel it's important to receive funding from many diverse sources, including individual listeners, local businesses, foundations and the CPB. The inability to secure CPB funds would not be a fatal blow to KNKX, but it would have a noticeable and immense effect on our ability to serve the community with local news and music programming.

What is CPB's role in public broadcasting?

The CPB is distinct from both NPR and PBS. It is not a broadcaster, but a private corporation created by Congress in 1967 with two primary functions: to serve as a firewall between partisan politics and public broadcasting, and to help fund programming, stations and technology.

Why does public broadcasting need federal funding?

Federal funding is essential to the funding mix that supports public broadcasting. CPB funding provides critical seed money and basic operating support to local stations, which then leverage each $1 of federal funding to raise over $6 from local sources — a tremendous return on the taxpayer investment.

Federal funding provides essential support for public broadcasting’s mission to ensure universal access to high-quality, non-commercial programming that educates, informs, enlightens and enriches the public, with a particular focus on the needs of underserved audiences, including children and people of color.

In many rural areas, public broadcasting is the only source of free local, national and international news, public affairs and cultural programming – and with such small populations they often rely more heavily on federal funding. Without it, these stations would likely be unable to continue to provide local communities with news, information, cultural and educational programming that they currently provide, and could even go off the air altogether.

In addition, the CPB helps negotiate music rights for all public stations and provides administrative support, allowing stations to aggregate together for cost-effective sharing of information, research and services.