GAO statement on NPR financial crisis, 1984

NPR was shaken, President Frank Mankiewicz and other top managers toppled and some 60 staffers laid off in the network’s 1983 financial crisis. NPR, then largely dependent on federal aid through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, had expanded activities to generate nonfederal money. But those efforts contributed to NPR’s near-collapse. The U.S. Government Accounting Office found that revenues lagged behind budget, expenditures exceeded budget and management lacked systems to monitor the situation, resulting in a $6.4 million deficit in fiscal year 1983. In this statement, Frederick D. Wolf, director of GAO’s Accounting and Financial Management Division, reviewed factors in NPR’s fiscal crisis and cutbacks that barely enabled it to break even at that point.