President Signs CR to Keep Government Funded Through April 8

Public broadcasting facilities program axed
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The President signed the continuing resolution Friday, which
means the government continues to get funded through April 8. It is the second
short-term, stop-gap appropriations bill passed in the past several weeks as
Republicans and Democrats continue to fight over larger budget cuts.

This bill H.J. Res. 48 cuts some funding to the Corporation
for Public Broadcasting. The cuts are separate from the NPR-targeted cuts being
proposed, and the effort to zero out CPB
funding entirely, and were supported by the President. But CPB
says at least one of them could be problematic.

While CPB did not
ask for more funding for two of the programs cut, a third, the $20 million for
the Public Telecommunications Facilities Program (PTFP), was described as a
"core" program by Patrick Butler, president of the Public Media
Association, which was formed last month to lobby against major budget cuts
pushed primarily by Republicans. He said it had "[ensured that] local
public television and radio stations [were] able to provide the highest
quality, reliable, universal service to their communities, including
underserved areas and communities devastated by disasters."

The House has passed a bill to cut funding for NPR dues and
national programming, but that is unlikely to make it past the Democratically
controlled Senate.

In opposing that targeted NPR bill, the White House said it
was still open to "[CPB] spending
reductions that are reasonable."

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