PubTV and radio in Chicago lose longtime pubaffairs project

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The longest running multimedia public-affairs series in the nation, “Chicago Matters,” is ending after 19 years, according to Chicago Tribune media reporter Phil Rosenthal. The series was a partnership among pubTV’s WTTW 11, Chicago Public Radio, the Chicago Public Library and the Chicago Reporter newspaper to spotlight a major regional issue each year. It’s funded by the Chicago Community Trust. The group, citing the recession’s toll, said in a statement that it has “redirected $2.7 million towards basic human needs” and will stop funding “Chicago Matters” at the end of 2009. Last week the Trust announced a new program, “Community News Matters,” “to spur growth of new sources of quality local news.” One of 12 projects funded was the Chicago News Cooperative (Current, Oct. 26, 2009), which received $50,000 of the available $500,000.