WASHINGTON – March 4, 2014 – The Association of Public Television Stations (APTS) president and CEO Patrick Butler issued the following statement on President Obama’s FY 2015 budget that was released today:
“The Association of Public Television Stations is grateful for President Obama’s recommendation today of level funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) of $445 million for fiscal year 2017, under the advance funding policy for CPB established by President Ford in 1976. The Administration has been a faithful supporter of public television’s mission of education, public safety and well-informed citizenship, and we very much appreciate this steadfast support.
“Given this record, we are disappointed that the President’s budget once again recommends the consolidation of the Ready To Learn program under the general Department of Education budget. Ready To Learn has been proven to produce significant results in closing the achievement gap for children from less affluent families and in preparing them for success in school and in life. We continue to be grateful to our bipartisan congressional champions of Ready To Learn who have maintained this valuable program whose worth has been proven beyond dispute, and we look forward to preserving Ready To Learn as a stand-alone service that does exactly what it was intended to do, and does it very well.
“We are also disappointed that the President’s budget proposes elimination of $2 million for the Rural Digital program under the Department of Agriculture. This program continues to provide much-needed equipment assistance to our rural stations making the transition from analog to digital broadcasting, and we will make every effort to see this program continued while the need exists.”
The Association of Public Television Stations (APTS) is a nonprofit membership organization established in 1979. The mission of APTS is to conduct – in concert with member stations – advocacy, planning, research, communications and other activities that foster a strong and financially sound public television system providing essential public services to all Americans. Its affiliate APTS Action, Inc. promotes the legislative and regulatory interests of noncommercial television stations at the national level through direct advocacy and through grasstops and grassroots campaigns designed to garner bipartisan congressional support. For more information, visit www.apts.org.