Pacifica’s non-comm WBAI-FM NYC faces what interim executive director Bernard Duncan calls an imminent eviction from its transmitter site atop the Empire State Building at the end of the month. From his report to Pacifica’s board of directors:
“National office staff are working with New York staff to move transmission for the Empire State Building to [Four] Times Square with a resultant cost saving of almost two thirds. Payments of May and June rental on the transmission facility on the Empire State Building have been paid, but returned indicating an imminent eviction. We are working on alternatives.”
It’s likely due to late payments in the past. We reported in March that WBAI, with too few listeners to register on the Arbitron rankings, is all but bankrupt. Last year, most of the staff was laid off, including the entire news department. Making matters worse, the federal government, via the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, was withholding Pacifica’s grant money, thanks to the network’s “failure to provide documentation” for a 2012 audit.