WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 15, 2018 - America's Public Television Stations (APTS) president and CEO Patrick Butler issued the following statement today commending the U.S. House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS-Education) Subcommittee for recommending significant funding for public broadcasting:
"America’s Public Television Stations are delighted that the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies has recommended level funding of $445 million for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) for Fiscal Year 2021 and $20 million in FY 2019 for an annual interconnection and infrastructure account, which is the backbone of the public broadcasting system, providing local stations with national programming, connecting stations with each other, and creating efficiencies for our system.
“We are grateful for this important vote of confidence in our work in education, public safety and civic leadership in hundreds of American communities. These federal funds are indispensable to local public television stations’ public service missions and to ensuring that everyone everywhere in America has access to these essential services.
“Public television helps millions of preschool children get ready to learn in school and succeed in life, and supports two million teachers who educate 40 million K-12 students in American classrooms every day.
“Public television delivers essential public safety services, providing the backbone for presidential communications with the American people in times of national emergency, linking local law enforcement and first responder agencies with one another and with the public, and partnering with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to use public television’s broadcast signal to enhance public safety communications through datacasting.
“And public television serves as the “C-SPAN” of State governments, hosts candidate debates at every level of the ballot, and produces thousands of hours of programming on local public affairs, history and culture for America’s hometowns.
"We await further word on funding for Ready To Learn, a competitive grant program at the Department of Education, in hopes that this vital program which creates and distributes educational media content to millions of preschool children across America, and has been proven to help close the achievement gap between children from low-income families and their more affluent peers, will also be fully funded.
"We commend Chairman Cole, Ranking Member DeLauro, and the full bipartisan membership of the subcommittee for their excellent work in fashioning this important legislation, and we greatly appreciate the critical support they have provided for the work of local public television stations through this funding for CPB and interconnection."
America's Public Television Stations (APTS) is a nonprofit membership organization ensuring a strong and financially sound public television system and helping member stations provide essential public services in education, public safety and civic leadership to the American people. For more information, visit www.apts.org.