The Status of Public Media Funding

By Cait Beroza |

US Capitol building with summer flowers

As Congress adjourns for August recess, we wanted to share an update on the latest actions each chamber has taken on public media funding.

The Senate Appropriations Committee Protects Public Media Funding

On Thursday, July 27, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved two appropriations bills that preserve funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Interconnection, Ready To Learn, and the Next Generation Warning System.

This win for public media funding is a direct result of public radio and television advocates who showed up and contacted their Senate Appropriations Committee members in favor of public media funding.

The House Appropriations Committee Stalls Consideration of Bill that Defunds Public Media

The House Appropriations Committee will not consider its legislation that defunds public media before the August congressional recess. Our network’s outreach over the last few weeks has been crucial as we’ve worked to stop the House Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill from moving forward.

After August recess, we will again ramp up our calls to Committee members to oppose the bill. Can’t wait to register your disapproval? Send a message to your Representative now.

How will final federal funding be determined?

The House and Senate proposals for public media funding couldn’t be farther apart. Ultimately, both chambers will need to negotiate final funding levels for each federal program. At this point, we don’t know how that’s going to happen. But do we know that we’ll need to fight for public media funding every step of the way.

The bottom line is the Senate proposals for public media may not be the final funding numbers. We’re facing an environment of funding cuts and closed-door agreements, so ongoing grassroots engagement until funding is finalized will be vital for the survival of public media.

Thank you to every public media supporter who made their voice heard over the last month. Each message sent to Congress contributed to these results. We hope we can count on you to advance essential funding until it is signed into law.