The board of KUSP-FM in Santa Cruz, Calif., decided Wednesday to lay off Terry Green, g.m. of the financially struggling station.
Green had managed the community station for 12 years.
Two board members, Emily DuBois and Treasurer John Morrison, resigned after Green was dismissed. The three made up an internal working group that had been examining the station’s financial challenges and opposed cutting costs, according to the Santa Cruz Sentinel.
KUSP’s most recent audited financial report from December 2014 said the organization “has suffered recurring significant reductions in grant revenues and has a net deficiency in net assets that raise substantial doubt about its ability to continue as a going concern.” For the past five years, the station has “experienced severe cash shortages,” the audit noted.
According to a 2013 IRS document, Green and board President Terry O’Brien each loaned $35,000 to the station that fiscal year.
In a blog post written before his exit, Green told listeners that for the first time in 30 years, the station could not afford to provide live coverage of the Monterey Jazz Festival.
The audited financial statement says that merger talks with “a prospective partner” took place as recently as December 2014. O’Brien told Current that those discussions, which involved nearby KAZU-FM in Pacific Grove, “didn’t pan out.”
Public Media Co., the Boulder, Colo.-based consultancy that helps stations work toward financial sustainability, is conducting an organizational assessment that the board will present at its next public meeting Sept. 28, O’Brien said. Any changes in the station’s format or staffing will be made after the board examines that report, she said.
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