Modest state investment keeps Alaskans safe, informed and engaged - Kodiak Daily Mirror: Opinion

Modest state investment keeps Alaskans safe, informed and engaged

Posted: Friday, June 28, 2019 9:00 am

From Utqiagvik to Ketchikan, some 30,000 Alaskans are members of their local radio or TV public broadcasting stations. Many local and statewide businesses support public broadcasting by underwriting the cost of delivering quality programming. And the entire public broadcasting system is an economic engine — supporting 368 full and part-time jobs in small communities such as Kodiak and Bethel, to the cities of Anchorage, Fairbanks and Juneau.

Reliant on state funding decades ago, the system managers have worked hard to diversify the revenue stream — especially after the Alaska Legislature cut almost half of the funding to public broadcasting during the recession in 2016. In fact, the state portion is now just 11% of total funding.

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