TELL PACIFICA's BOARD: NO MORE CUTS TO KPFA!
The Pacifica National Board meets 7/20-7/23 at the Durant Hotel in Berkeley. Please join SaveKPFA & many KPFA staffers on Saturday afternoon for public comment. There's also an open reception at KPFA on Friday from 7-10pm. | MAP TO HOTEL
WHAT DO ALL THESE PEOPLE HAVE IN COMMON?
Executive Secretary, San Mateo Labor Council
former Pacifica National Affairs correspondent
Lynn Hollander Savio,
Mario Savio Memorial Lecture, Young Activist Award
Andrea Turner, cultural/community activist, LSB member
Jim Bennett, former KPFA operations director, interim GM
Asian Americans for
Peace & Justice
Rose Ketabchi, KPFA News
Dan Siegel, Philip Maldari,
attorney & activist,
KPFA board member
The Sunday Show
KPFA web producer
Executive Director, National Lawyers Guild, Los Angeles, KPFK host
producer, Letters & Politics
KPFA News anchor
producer, Early Morning Music
director, Peninsula Peace & Justice Center
KPFA's Music of the World
Brian Edwards-Tiekert, co-host, UpFront Vanessa Tait,
KPFA News, FSRN co-founder
former KPFA board chair, former PNB chair
President, Berkeley Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 1078
co-host, Against the Grain
chair, KPFA Local
KPFA's Living Room
host, KPFA's Dead to the World
KPFA's Letters & Politics
Founder, Justice in
Campaign Director, California Labor Federation
LSB member, journalist
Against the Grain
Listener rep, KPFA board
KPFA music programmerZeese Papanikolas,
host, The Hear and Now
News co-directorEddie Yuen,
Against the Grain
THEY ALL ENDORSE YES on the KPFA RECALL
(titles/organizations for ID only)
SaveKPFA seeks to rally progressive support for the station. We are committed to finding common ground with others who share our concerns about KPFA. We need to save this precious resource. More at www.SaveKPFA.org
THIS WEEKEND, DO ONE THING FOR KPFA
Come to the Pacifica National Board meeting to demand no more cuts at KPFA
It's been three years since the Pacifica National Board met in Berkeley -- and the first time the board has had to face our community since Pacifica killed the Morning Show, claiming financial necessity. The board is coming here this weekend.
At this moment, Pacifica is trying to impose $300,000 in new cuts on KPFA. KPFA's manager estimates this would entail cutting 7 to 8 positions. He hasn't specified which, but it would be enough to eliminate Letters & Politics, Against The Grain, UpFront and Hard Knock Radio -- nearly every daily program produced at our radio station.
These cuts are completely unnecessary. KPFA's financial statements show that, as of June, KPFA's bottom line is slightly better than budget, and the station is on track to run a six-figure surplus by September 30, the end of the fiscal year. (See the Pacifica audit story below for a fuller picture of the network's finances.)
The 22 members of the Pacifica National Board need to hear from KPFA listeners, when they meet July 20-23 at Berkeley's Durant Hotel, 2600 Durant Avenue (@Bowditch in Berkeley). Pacifica hasn't posted an agenda yet, and sadly, it looks like the board may spend most of its time in "executive session," behind closed doors. Some of these board members refused to even read KPFA listener emails earlier this year.
SO PLEASE JOIN US AT THE BOARD MEETING SATURDAY AFTERNOON, 7/21 -- that's when we expect the board to have open sessions and take public comment. Come then and you'll meet up with KPFA staffers like Letters and Politics host Mitch Jeserich, Against the Grain co-host Sasha Lilley, KPFA News anchor John Hamilton, and many other SaveKPFA supporters who will be at the meeting.
Recall vote -- halfway there!
The long-delayed ballot to recall Pacifica treasurer Tracy Rosenberg is two weeks from completion. If you were a KPFA member at any time between November 2010 and November 2011, you should have received a ballot. Ballots must be received at Pacifica's election PO Box by August 3. If you haven't yet, vote YES now and mail ASAP.
If you still don't have a ballot, or it is damaged or lost, REQUEST ONE IMMEDIATELY from Pacifica's election supervisor at email@example.com or (323) 375-4126. Be sure to copy SaveKPFA on your request, and let us know by email or phone when you get it. Some listeners have told us that it has taken more than one try to actually get results -- so be persistent. Collectively, we can keep this election honest!
IMPORTANT: FILL IN THE WHOLE BALLOT SQUARE, don't just check it, and KEEP YOUR PIN BALLOT STUB AS PROOF that you voted. If there are issues with the fairness of the vote process, we'll be asking you to help us prove that, and your PIN stub may help. Once you have voted, please take a moment to let us know by filling out SaveKPFA's convenient online survey , or simply contact us by email or phone. You'll be helping us document the vote in case there are challenges to the process.
Endorsements for the YES campaign continue to roll in Here's a sampling of the latest YES endorsements (all titles/organizations for ID only): CHRIS KAVANAGH, former elected Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board Commissioner (2002-2008), former Green Party of Alameda County Central/County Council member * EMILY ALMA, Chico Peace and Justice Center, Butte Environmental Council, Occupy Chico, Chico Palestine Action Group * SCOTT CAMIL, activist * HELENE KNOX, poet, KPFA listener/volunteer * EDDY PAY, KPFA music programmer * SASHA FUTRAN, member, KPFA local station board * FRANCESCA ROSA, member, SEIU 1021, delegate. SF Labor Council * BILL HARVEY, former president, Alameda County Labor Council, AFL-CIO* GENE COYLE, economist & listener * LAWRENCE DAVIDSON, former co-host of Probabilities, a KPFA show * MARY TILSON, host, America's Back 40 * LAYNA BERMAN, unpaid programmer, Your Own Health & Fitness * LISA KERMISH, Vice President, UPTE-CWA Local 9119 * CARLOS ECHEVARRIA, listener, Inglewood CA * JAN ETRE, KPFA Crafts Fair coordinator * CELIA REYES, listener, Oakland * JACK SAWYER, President, Parker Street Foundation * SHARON MALDONADO, listener * RAMSEY KANAAN, KPFA unpaid staff, founder AK Press & PM Press * GUADALUPE LEDESMA, listener 30+ yrs * LESLIE TOWNSEND, college professor * ROBERT LONGER, EVP, CWA Local 9421. | See COMPLETE ENDORSERS' LIST HERE and ADD YOUR NAME
Pacifica's long-awaited audit shows where the money goes
Pacifica's audited financial statements for the years ending September 2010 and 2011 have finally been released. You can download the reports at Pacifica's website. The independent auditor raises "substantial doubt" that Pacifica can continue as a "going concern" without making changes in the way it operates.
The audit shows that of the network's five stations, KPFA is the wealthiest, with net assets of $3.2 million. KPFK in Los Angeles is the only other station in the black. The rest are underwater. Worst of all is WBAI in New York, which has been operating under Pacifica-installed management for nearly four years. WBAI has a current net worth of NEGATIVE $3.3 million -- with a deficit of $750,000 in 2011 alone.
You can also see from these audits that Pacifica's National Office raises very little of its own funds. The lion's share of Pacifica's budget -- $2,001,298 -- comes from imposing a "levy" on the 5 stations (KPFA, KPFK, KPFT, WPFW and WBAI), of which KPFA pays roughly one quarter.
Where'd Pacifica's $2 million go? The National Office doesn't produce any programming of its own, but it carries personnel costs of $1.1 million -- mostly in management-level salaries. And it's been spending increasing amounts on "legal fees." In 2010, legal fees came to $328,433. In 2011, they grew to an astonishing $538,417. Some of it has been spent on expensive lawyers fighting legal actions sparked by Pacifica's heavy-handed tactics at its member stations. In addition, SaveKPFA's review of legal bills reveals that Pacifica has paid attorneys up to $500 per hour to come up with legal strategies for obstructing the KPFA recall election currently underway, and blocking dissident board members' legal right to inspect records (such as legal bills).
For background, read Brian Edwards-Tiekert's open letter on layoffs and our report on Pacifica's demand for $1 million in cuts at the stations.
Pacifica: "Hands off KPFA"
That's what long-time supporter Van Jones, founder of Rebuild the Dream, said at a recent KPFA fundraiser about Pacifica's actions at KPFA. "There's a reason we're so passionate about this station," Jones continued, "and there's a reason the people in Pacifica need to listen to the voice of the people...We can solve these problems here locally."
Since 1999, the costs of supporting Pacifica's national bureaucracy has grown from 9% to 20% of the network's total income. To give some perspective, the National Office's budget is twice the size of either KPFT or WPFW, and it's nearly the same size as each of the the other three stations (KPFA, KPFK and WBAI). Pacifica was meant to be a coordinating body to provide support and reduce costs, but it has become the opposite of that. It produces no radio programs, but spends huge sums on executive salaries and costly, unproductive board meetings. KPFA could operate much more easily if it did not have to pay 20% of its listener contributions to Pacifica.
In the press
San Francisco's Fog City Journal printed Aileen Alfandary's open letter challenging Tracy Rosenberg's financial claims and urging a YES vote on the recall. Alfandary is co-director of the KPFA News Department, and was among those arrested in the newsroom during Pacifica's 1999 lockout of staff and listeners.
The California Labor Federation published a blog from the activists at KPFAWorker.org urging a YES vote on the recall. "The shocking thing," wrote one reader, "is how the internal attacks on KPFA's union mimic the exact rhetoric being used against public-sector unions across the country."
You are making a difference
Thanks to all of you who helped, Free Speech Radio News made its goal of raising $75,000 last month, and announced it will be able to stay on the air for the time being. After Pacifica failed to pay the network's news service, Democracy Now! co-anchors Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez made a special appeal for FSRN, and other supporters, including SaveKPFA, encouraged donations.
is relying on you to help get out the vote and get people to this Pacifica National Board meeting. Circulating this newsletter among your friends who may be KPFA or Pacifica supporters is a very good way to do that. Please forward this newsletter to at least 3 friends right now,
and ask them to attend Saturday's PNB meeting
and vote YES on the recall.
SaveKPFA WELCOMES ENDORSEMENTS from all members of the KPFA community. View our lists of endorsers here and here. You can join us by filling out this form.
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