Langevin Votes to Restore Public Broadcasting Funding

Jun 24, 2005
(Warwick, R.I.)–Congressman Jim Langevin (D-RI) yesterday joined a solid majority in voting to restore $100 million in cuts to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). The House voted 284-140 in favor of an amendment to return the fiscal year 2006 CPB appropriation to $400 million.

If the cuts had been maintained, Rhode Island PBS would have lost $351, 211 (44.5 percent) of their budget. The appropriation must still be considered by the Senate.

“This is a sound victory for Rhode Island families who have come to rely on the quality programming that public television and radio stations provide daily,” said Langevin. “I urge my Senate colleagues to approve full funding for CPB so that these programs can continue.”

The federal appropriation accounts for only about 15 percent of the entire cost of public broadcasting, but this funding leverages critical investments from state and local governments, universities, businesses, foundations and, most important, from viewers and listeners of local public television and radio stations.

“Rhode Island PBS thanks Congressman Langevin for his vision and help in achieving our educational mission locally and Congress’s education priorities nationally. The proposed cuts would have made it almost impossible for stations to recover,” said David Piccerelli, Rhode Island PBS Acting President and CEO. “We also appreciate the continued support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting allowing us to fulfill our mission to provide educational services to Rhode Island preschoolers and students across the state, as well as the teachers, parents, and daycare providers who educate them.”

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) is the U.S.-taxpayer-funded agency that provides critical dollars to public broadcasting across the country. According to the nonpartisan Roper polling firm, Americans consider the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) the nation’s “most trusted” among nationally known organizations. They also believe that PBS is the second “most valuable” service taxpayers receive, outranked only by national defense. The same poll also found that a majority of Americans believes the system receives too little funding.