President Donald Trump’s newest budget is again proposing to do away with federal funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which helps fund PBS and National Public Radio.
The budget proposal would cut funding for CPB over the next two years and still provide about $30 million combined in 2019 and 2020 to cover personnel costs of $16.2 million, rental costs of $8.9 million and other costs totaling $5.4 million.
It was about this time last year when Trump previously proposed cutting funding for CPB. At that time, CPB CEO Patricia Harrison said the funding cut would devastate public media and questioned why the U.S. government would want to defund one of “America’s best investments.”
“At approximately $1.35 per citizen per year, it pays huge dividends to every American. From expanding opportunity, beginning with proven children’s educational content to providing essential news and information as well as ensuring public safety and homeland security through emergency alerts, this vital investment strengthens our communities. It is especially critical for those living in small towns and in rural and underserved areas,” said Harrison.
In response to the latest effort to defund CPB, PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger said, “Public broadcasting has earned bipartisan Congressional support over the years thanks to the value we provide to taxpayers.”
“PBS, our 350 member stations and our legions of local supporters will continue to remind leaders in Washington of the significant benefits the public receives in return for federal funding, a modest investment of about $1.35 per citizen per year, which include school readiness for kids 2-8, support for teachers and homeschoolers, public safety communications and lifelong learning. PBS is focused on providing high-quality content and universal public service to the American people, which is why we enjoy strong support in every region of the country, in both rural and urban areas, and across the political spectrum,” said Kerger in a statement.