The state funding ranged from 7% to 28% of public media stations’ budgets. But the loss could lead to some Alaska stations losing much more federal funding.
A state Senate panel wants to eliminate funding for most public broadcasting in Alaska. That puts it in conflict with the House and the governor.
The Senate may vote on its version of the budget on Saturday. Then the two houses will work to resolve the differences.
It’s an early step in a potential $3.5 million reduction sure to rile supporters of Alaska’s public TV and radio stations.
The Alaska Rural Communication Service, which provides free TV programming in much of rural Alaska, is switching its stations from analog to digital in the coming months.
The Alaska Legislature missed its adjournment deadline on Sunday night, after failing to reach agreement on the state’s budget.
Juneau residents who testified on the latest version of the state operating budget Monday urged lawmakers to reverse proposed cuts to early childhood education, the state ferry system and public broadcasting.
Mat-Su Republican Mike Dunleavy warned that the cuts would be deep before announcing them at a Thursday meeting.