With recent news coverage of budgets and government spending packages, you may be wondering – what’s the current status of federal funding for public media? Here’s a quick overview of where we are in the annual budget and appropriations process.
FY 2017 Federal Funding for Public Media
On Friday, May 5, 2017, the President signed a spending bill into law to fund the federal government for the remaining five months of the fiscal year (through September 30, 2017).
The FY 2017 spending bill included full federal funding for public media!
A big thanks to viewers and listeners like you who spoke up in support of federal funding for public media. You made these results possible.
We’re glad you’ve warmed up your voices because we’ll need you to raise them again very soon.
FY 2018 Federal Funding for Public Media
FY 2018 federal funding for public media has already been threatened. In mid-March, the President sent a “skinny” budget to Congress, which recommended eliminating federal funding for public media. The President’s budget isn’t law. It’s an outline of what the administration wants and doesn’t want Congress to fund.
Later this month, the President will send a full version of his budget to Congress. The House and Senate will review this budget and then write their own, ultimately working together on a final congressional budget.
The congressional budget is important because it sets the total amount the government can spend in a fiscal year. It also includes instructions for how the money should be used.
The Appropriations Committees are then tasked with writing the actual legislation that provides funding for specific programs, including those that support local public media stations.
We’ll be closely watching these budgets to make sure there aren’t instructions that negatively impact public media funding.
The Bottom Line
Pat yourself on the back. Public media was funded through FY 2017!
But, the fight for funding isn’t over, yet. The congressional process for deciding next year’s funding is about to begin.
To ensure public media is protected, we need to tell Congress to provide essential funding for public radio and television stations every step of the way.