Despite what President Trump may desire with respect to future funding — or lack thereof — for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Congress appears to have its back.
The U.S. House and Senate Appropriations Committees on Thursday each approved legislation that gives CPB millions of dollars in Federal funding through the end of 2020.
In a 29-2 vote, the Senate Committee on Appropriations approved the CPB funding as part of the FY2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS) Appropriations Bill, which gives funding support for continued medical research, opioid abuse prevention, and education programs.
The bill provides $36.1 billion for the National Institutes of Health, a $2 billion increase over fiscal 2017. Yet, it sets the funding for the U.S. Department of Labor at $12 billion, $61.5 million below fiscal 2017.
Where does CPB come in? The agency is receiving $445 million for fiscal 2020, and it is level funding with fiscal 2019.
An additional $20 million is provided for fiscal 2018 “to continue upgrading the public broadcasting interconnection system,” the Senate committee notes.
The Senate action came after the equivalent committee in the House gave the nod for CPB funding. There was one difference in the Senate bill that is to CPB’s benefit: interconnection funding was not included in the House’s appropriations legislation.
CPB President/CEO Patricia Harrison thanked the House and Senate committees in providing CPB with an advance appropriation of $445 million in fiscal 2020. “This appropriation is vital in ensuring that public media’s distinctive, high-quality educational and informational content and emergency alert services continue to reach every American, regardless of where you live or your economic means,” she said.