May 21, 2012

Cato Institute analyst lays out case for defunding pubcasting

Public broadcasting "suffers the main downside of public funding — political influence and control — yet enjoys little of the upside — a significant taxpayer contribution that would relieve it of the need to seek corporate underwriting and listener donations," writes Trevor Burrus, a legal associate at the Cato Institute's Center for Constitutional Studies, in his policy analysis released today (May 21) titled, "If You Love Something Set It Free: A Case for Defunding Public Broadcasting."

Burrus writes that PBS and NPR "produce some excellent programming." However, he believes a government-funded institution should be necessary, prudent, and, most important, "authorized by our Constitution. Public broadcasting fails all three tests."

The analysis is available free for download here.

The Cato Institute is a libertarian think tank based in Washington, D.C., which supports individual liberties and limited government.

St. Louis Public Radio will take over Illinois station

The University of Missouri St. Louis announced last week that it will acquire WQUB-FM in Quincy, Ill., from owner Quincy University. After the sale is completed in the next few months, UMSL’s St. Louis Public Radio will take over operations at WQUB, and the station will be renamed Quincy Public Radio.

Quincy University President Robert Gervasi said in 2009 that the university was having trouble contributing about $235,000 a year to run WQUB, according to the Quincy Herald-Whig. That amounted to about 55 percent of the station’s annual operating costs. Gervasi had sought additional financial support from prospects in Quincy, and the university transferred operations of WQUB to an local NBC affiliate, which resulted in layoffs.

Public Radio Capital represented UMSL in the deal with Quincy University.