Trump approves Labor–HHS support for CPB, interconnection, Ready To Learn

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President Trump signed the Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations Bill for fiscal 2019 Friday, securing forward funding for CPB and annual support for two other public broadcasting budget items.

The legislation gives CPB flat funding of $445 million for FY21. The rebuilding of public broadcasting’s interconnection infrastructure gets $20 million for FY19, the full amount public broadcasters had requested. Ready To Learn, the public TV early-childhood education project, gets $27.7 million of a $30 million request.

Pat Butler, president of America’s Public Television Stations, said in an announcement that Trump’s signature marks “the culmination of the Appropriations Committees’ major bipartisan effort to consider and pass appropriations bills in a timely manner.” It’s the first time in more than two decades that the Labor-HHS-Education Bill has been signed into law before the end of the fiscal year, Butler said.

And CPB President Pat Harrison said the corporation’s outlay “underlies a vital public private partnership that helps stations raise $6 of nonfederal support for every federal dollar.”

Trump originally drafted an FY19 budget in February that would have provided CPB with $15 million to shut down.

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