Gabriel Teodros / photo by Morgen Schuler
By Tom Mara, KEXP Executive Director
Recently, many KEXP listeners have reached out to me to express concern about the future of federal support for public media through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, or CPB. This morning, we learned that President Trump’s proposed budget includes the elimination of federal funding for CPB. This past year, KEXP received around 10% of our annual budget from CPB through a Community Service Grant.
In the coming weeks and months, Congress will consider the President’s budget proposal and come up with a spending plan of their own. At this point, we don’t know if that budget will include funding for CPB or not.
As an independent nonprofit, KEXP understands that it’s prudent to receive funding from as many different sources as possible. Of course, when we say that KEXP is listener-powered, we mean it. Individual donors represent the largest percentage of our funding mix. In addition to your support, the KEXP programming you love is also powered by donations from local businesses, local government, foundations and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
KEXP’s Community Service Grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting helps support our general operations as a public broadcaster. It pays for some basic essentials that help us bring you music programming every day of the year.
This grant also makes possible the creation of original live performance programming that is distributed free of charge to dozens of college stations across the country and around the world. This program, Under the Needle, features the very best of in-studio performances captured by KEXP. It is designed to be shared with student and public stations all over the world who don’t have access to the technology or space required to host these performances, or who would not otherwise be able to feature the types of artists who are drawn to play in our studio.
Particularly important for music-centered stations like KEXP, CPB also helps negotiate music rights and pay music royalties for public broadcasters.
At its core, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting helps stations like ours provide ad-free radio programming that enriches and informs, in a way that just isn’t available elsewhere in the commercial media landscape. For KEXP, this funding ensures that we are able to provide universal free access to music and performance to all communities, regardless of income, geographic location, or any other qualifier.
We will no doubt learn more about the future for public media in the coming days and weeks. In the meantime, I encourage you to share your story about how public media impacts your life at by sending me an email at email@example.com.
As always, you can support KEXP and ensure that great music programming will continue to be here for you and your family for years to come by making a gift at kexp.org/donate.