|A newsletter about some things happening at WBAI.||January 24, 2006|
|Presented by R. Paul Martin as an individual producer.||Vol. 3 No. 1|
Pacifica National Board Meeting
This meeting in Houston, TX was postponed from September due to Hurricane Rita. The Pacifica National Board (PNB) passed a bylaws amendment that would have shortened the amount of time that candidates for LSB would have to submit their nominating petitions.
A hot topic was a KPFT LSB member who was illegally suspended in an operation as unfair and underhanded as the one in New York last March, the perpetrators saying that if the WBAI LSB could do it so could they.
WBAI interim General Manager (iGM) Indra Hardat reported that the Fall ‘thon had come up short of its goal (by about $115,000), and in FY05 the station subscriber base had fallen from about 21,000 to about 17,000.
The PNB interviewed candidates for Executive Director (ED) of the Pacifica Foundation.
UPDATE: the new ED is Greg Guma. It is not known at this time if he shares the faction currently in charge's views on topics such as embezzlement, patronage and general corruption.
Interim ED and PNB Chair Ambrose Lane Sr. said that a lot of people are only paying atten tion to their own narrow interests and not to the survival of Pacifica.
Local Station Board Meeting
The Chair had put approval of the bylaws amend ment on the agenda. I pointed out that this required a Delegates' meeting and this was only a LSB meeting. The Chair ruled that we'd have to vote on the approval another day.
There was a dispute about the member whom the faction voted to “suspend” back in March. Now they're saying that his apology just wasn't good enough. Of course it will never be good enough. As of the date of this newsletter that member is in the eleventh month of the six month suspension.
During the Treasurer's report the downward trend
|of WBAI ‘thons was brought up. A number of LSB members asked that specific figures regarding income be brought for a Committee of the Whole at the next LSB meeting. I asked if the PNB Finance Committee has discussed anything about the expense of moving all five Pacifica stations to digital broadcasting, which will be mandatory in a few years. The Treasurer reported that this expense has never been brought up.
The LSB approved a Staff survey as a part of the evaluation of the Program director (PD). The faction currently in charge was denouncing Staff surveys based on the PD's job description in 2004. UPDATE: Although all Staff were to get these surveys I've heard from a number who didn't. The first survey got 39 valid responses, out of 252 Staff deemed eligible to vote in the last LSB election. But the faction members who took the surveys out of the locker wouldn't allow a Staff LSB member to watch how they separated the envelopes to ensure anonymity of the responses.
iGM's Staff Meeting
This meeting started 47 minutes late with 16 people present. IGM Indra Hardat said that of the people who had insisted that it be on a Saturday afternoon none had shown up for the meeting.
The iGM reported that WBAI started FY06 with a $200,000 deficit which became a $450,000 deficit and then got worse. She said that Staff needs to help, programs need to grow audience. WBAI has not borrowed any money from the other stations to help with this deficit. An anonymous donor has given money to support the WBAI Internet archives for one year.
The book party made $5,023, which has since been used to purchase three new CD players for Master Control. A pier party made $2,730, a film presentation made $2,340 and another fund raiser made $911. The iGM said that every little bit helps. She also said that the air is our main business and that we need to restructure programming, if people aren't listening they can't support us.
Page Two of this newsletter