WYPR found wanting on community contact

April 08, 2009|By Chris Kaltenbach | Chris Kaltenbach,chris.kaltenbach@baltsun.com

A Corporation for Public Broadcasting investigation - prompted by the firing of talk-show host Marc Steiner last year - has found that public radio station WYPR-FM has not been meeting requirements for seeking community input and holding public meetings.

In addition to its failure to follow procedures to ensure public input, the report concluded that WYPR also could not show that it had spent money from the CPB - more than $331,000 for fiscal 2007 - as was required. The report did not accuse WYPR of misspending funds but strongly suggested its bookkeeping be improved.

The station president and general manager,, Anthony Brandon, said he found the report's findings "helpful in clarifying" the CPB rules.

"The report noted some areas of the station [are] not in full compliance, which the station has already rectified," he said in an e-mail statement.

Requirements that must be met by radio stations to receive CPB funding are outlined in the Federal Communications Act of 1934, as amended. As part of its annual application process for CPB funding, the report noted, station officials signed statements that WYPR was in compliance with requirements.

Steiner was fired in February 2008. At the time, station officials said he was fired for poor ratings. Steiner's supporters protested, citing lack of public input.

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