WVPT GM responds to proposed state-funding elimination
WVPT President and General Manager David Mullins on Wednesday issued the following statement in response to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell’s proposed 2012-2014 state budget, which calls for the elimination of state funding for public broadcasting:
“The proposed reductions would result in a loss of approximately $420,000 from WVPT’s annual funding. As in the past, we will make our case with the General Assembly for funding the unique and valued services WVPT and our public broadcasting partners throughout Virginia provide. We understand that in this environment, the Governor has some tough decisions to make. However, this complete elimination of funding will have a direct impact on teachers, students and schools.
“The elimination of funding for Education Services, budget Item 123, particularly affects services for teachers, students and parents, many who live in the rural areas of WVPT’s service area. Last year alone WVPT’s Educational Services provided savings and value of approximately $2 million for 22 regional school districts that we serve. WVPT will look at all avenues to determine if we can continue to provide these services, or a portion of these services to the teachers, students and parents that have benefitted from these resources over the years. However, the reality is that without funding from the Commonwealth, these services will most likely end.
“Over the past several years budget Item 122, the Community Services Grants for public television and radio stations, has been significantly reduced and WVPT has been preparing to offset the eventual elimination of this funding source through continued efficiencies in our operations.
“WVPT remains grateful for the continued generosity of the many individual donors and businesses throughout the region who have contributed. Their belief in the importance and value of our services and programming is critical. Now more than ever, we encourage our region to continue to bring their collective support for WVPT.”