President Barack Obama’s budget for next year recommends $496 million for CPB, including a $460 million two-year advance appropriation for FY13, according to APTS. That’s an increase of $40 million from this year and $15 million from FY12. Also included is $36 million for pubTV and radio digital conversion, content and services. “The proposed increase in the advance appropriation reflects a recognition of the enormous return on investment public broadcasting generates regarding education, job training and disease prevention,” said APTS President Larry Sidman. But persuasive work remains, Sidman noted: The budget omits funding for the Public Telecommunications Facilities Program, which helps pay for public stations’ equipment upgrades, and the Agriculture Department’s Rural Utility Service Digital Transition Grant Program. Also, the Obama budget proposes to consolidate Ready to Learn (Current, June 23, 2008) and Ready to Teach into larger education programs, without specific funding for either. Station reps will hear all about this and more as they swarm on Capitol Hill during APTS’ annual Capitol Hill Day lobbyfest Feb. 7-9.