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Corporation for Public Broadcasting Gets Full Funding

The Senate Appropriations Committee this week approved full funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting—$445 million—for FY2019.

CPB, which hands out government funding to noncommercial TV and radio stations, is forward funded to try to depoliticize the process, though that has not always worked.

The Department of Education also got $25.7 million for its Ready to Learn (RTL) early learning programming in FY2017.

While in the past, Republicans, and even some Democrats, have balked at the funding and pushed for cuts for the past couple of funding cycles, there has been support from both sides for full funding.

The committee also approved an additional $50 million for FY2017 for public broadcasting's ongoing interconnection efforts.

America's Public Television Stations (APTS) CEO Patrick Butler said his group was "delighted" at the funding decision.

"These federal funds are essential to local public television station's public service missions of education, public safety and civic leadership, and to ensuring that everyone everywhere in America has access to these services," Butler said. "The continuing federal investment in locally owned and operated public television stations has helped foster significant progress in all these fields in the past five years..."

He added he hoped Congress would continue that support as the appropriations process moves forward.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.