Public Broadcasting under attack

The IPTV remote production truck outside of Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa in 2011. IPTV has covered College Wrestling for 35 seasons.

I am an employee of Iowa Public Television.

Let’s get that out-of-the-way before we go any further.

And, we here at Iowa’s network, are under attack.

But before I started working here on The Iowa Journal, Market To Market and College Wrestling, I was a consumer, just like many of you. I watched Sesame Street, Frontline, Austin City Limits and many other programs offered only on public television.

I’m also a huge consumer of public radio. Have you listened to NPR news programming before? Incredible depth is offered. Also programs like Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me and This American Life, Marketplace are all staples of information.

These programs are consumer supported, but also government supported. We don’t get all our operational money from the federal state government, but it allows us to provide coverage from the resident of Terrace Hill to the piano competition bearing the same name.

Our general manager Dan Miller sent out the following memo today.

Hello,

I’m sure you’ve seen press reports about plans released Friday night to eliminate federal funding for public broadcasting. The plans are contained in an appropriations bill that will be debated in the House this week.

This is serious. If realized, the proposal would cripple IPTV and seriously jeopardize our continued ability to deliver services to the 1.5 M people who use them each week. That’s because CPB funding alone — the lion’s share of the federal public broadcasting dollar — amounts to 13% or 2.3M of our operating budget. It touches everything we do — everything. And it couldn’t come at a worse time, with IPTV facing a third round of significant state budget cuts that, if enacted, will result in our state appropriation being 26% less than it was 3 years ago.

You should know that we’re working very hard on this issue – arguing for the merits of what we do using myriad means: our broadcast air on all three channels, e-mail to18,000 supporters, calls and letters from boards and donors and others with close political connections.

You should also know that we plan to continue are efforts until they’re no longer needed.

If you were waiting for the right time to sign up for http://www.170millionamericans.org//

/dkm

Daniel K. Miller
Executive Director
and General Manager
Iowa Public Television

Please take time to visit http://www.170millionamericans.org and sign up your name, make a phone call, write a letter, do whatever you feel is important to make sure continued work here in the public media sector.

I’ve worked in the commercial world and now the public side. We do two different things and offer services and coverage in different ways.

If you don’t feel it is important, that’s fine, but I think if you’ve read this note this far, I think you find some value in what we do.

Thank you.

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