NEW MEXICO PBS and PBS STATEMENTS
REGARDING THE OCTOBER 3RD PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE
(Albuquerque, NM) – “New Mexico PBS is proud to have served the people of New Mexico for over 54 years and we share the concerns of Paula Kerger, President and CEO of PBS, who issued this statement today,” said Polly Anderson, CEO and General Manager, of New Mexico PBS.
PBS Statement Regarding October 3 Presidential Debate
October 4, 2012
We are very disappointed that PBS became a political target in the Presidential debate last night. Governor Romney does not understand the value the American people place on public broadcasting and the outstanding return on investment the system delivers to our nation. We think it is important to set the record straight and let the facts speak for themselves.
The federal investment in public broadcasting equals about one one-hundredth of one percent of the federal budget. Elimination of funding would have virtually no impact on the nation’s debt. Yet the loss to the American public would be devastating.
A national survey by the bipartisan research firms of Hart Research and American Viewpoint in 2011 found that over two-thirds of American voters (69%) oppose proposals to eliminate government funding of public broadcasting, with Americans across the political spectrum against such a cut.
As a stated supporter of education, Governor Romney should be a champion of public broadcasting, yet he is willing to wipe out services that reach the vast majority of Americans, including underserved audiences, such as children who cannot attend preschool and citizens living in rural areas.
For more than 40 years Big Bird has embodied the public broadcasting mission – harnessing the power of media for the good of every citizen, regardless of where they live or their ability to pay. Our system serves as a universally accessible resource for education, history, science, arts and civil discourse.
Over the course of a year, 91% of all U.S. television households tune into their local PBS station. In fact, our service is watched by 81% of all children between the ages of 2-8.
Each day, the American public receives an enduring and daily return on investment that is heard, seen, read and experienced in public broadcasting broadcasts, apps, podcasts, and online – all for the cost of about $1.35 per person per year.
Earlier in 2012, a Harris Interactive poll confirmed that Americans consider PBS the most trusted public institution and the second most valuable use of public funds, behind only national defense, for the 9th consecutive year.
A key thing to remember is that public television and radio stations are locally owned and community focused and they are experts in working efficiently to make limited resources produce results. In fact, for every $1.00 of federal funding invested, they raise an additional $6.00 on their own – a highly effective public-private partnership.
Numerous studies — including one requested by Congress earlier this year — have stated categorically that while the federal investment in public broadcasting is relatively modest, the absence of this critical seed money would cripple the system and bring its services to an end.
For some quick facts about PBS, please go to: www.valuePBS.org
New Mexico PBS has a long tradition of providing quality educational programming and services and is the largest provider of preschool education in the state. New Mexico PBS’s Ready to Learn Service impacts the lives of over 10,000 children each year presenting over 100 workshops for parents and caregivers and distributing over 6,000 books. In an average month, more than half (54%) of all New Mexico television households tune into New Mexico PBS. During that month over 100,000 (103,695) of New Mexico’s kids will watch and learn from New Mexico PBS’ award winning children’s programming.
“We know public broadcasting is an invaluable resource and a worthy investment,” said Polly Anderson, New Mexico PBS. “170 Million Americans benefit from our services every week. 170 Million Americans for Public Broadcasting is a collaboration of public radio and television stations, national organizations, producers, viewers and listeners throughout the country in favor of a strong public media in the United States. You can visit www.170MillionAmericans.org to help ensure that the news, culture, and education you rely on remains for everyone to share.”
Make your voice heard. Support Public Broadcasting.
Go to www.170MillionAmericans.org
10/9/12 – Read Ken Burns: Romney’s war on public TV is a loss for USA from USA Today. Ken Burns describes the difference between the price of things and their VALUE. Watch Ken Burns’ new opus The Dust Bowl November 18 on New Mexico PBS, Channel 5.1.