Pubcasting funding down, “more cuts, some severe” in FY11

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PubTV funding is down $200 million and radio is down $38 million, the CPB Board heard at today’s meeting at headquarters in Washington. Mark Erstling, senior veep for system development, and Bruce Theriault, senior veep, radio, presented the figures providing comparisons between actual FY08 totals and FY09 estimates. Also discussed: Waning state support (see this week’s Current for details). Board member Bruce Ramer expressed concern about community service grants being tied to the amount of state funding a station receives. “Maybe state funds should not be included in the formula in the same way that federal funds aren’t,” Ramer suggested. Theriault predicted that for FY11, “we expect many more cuts, some severe.” Meanwhile, another station has been accepted for financial stabilization assistance, NPR affiliate WICN, playing jazz and folk in Worcester, Mass. In station equipment news, CPB will continue investing in master controls — but only for collaborating stations. “We continue to hear about stations pursuing efficiencies and strengthening business models through collaborations and local management agreements where the weaker station is now run by the stronger,” Theriault said. “We’re encouraging that work.”