NPR budget for 2013 projects $5 million deficit

By Mike Janssen

The 2013 budget approved by the NPR Board Sept. 14 projects a $5.1 million operating deficit, with expenses adding up to $185.5 million and revenues projected at $180.4 million. Management plans to cover the shortfall with working capital and operating reserves.

The 2013 spending plan anticipates a 5 percent gain in sponsorship income, which fell far behind projections this year. NPR expects to close fiscal 2012, which ends Sept. 30, with a $6 million shortfall that’s primarily attributable to a decline in corporate sponsorship, according to Dana Davis Rehm, senior v.p. for marketing, communications and external relations.

After hitting a new record in underwriting income in fiscal 2011, NPR overestimated sponsorship revenue for this year, Rehm said. The gains projected for 2013 are based on this year’s more modest earnings.

Development income was also under budget this year due to delays in securing grants, Rehm said, but it outpaced revenues earned the previous year by 5 percent. NPR is ending this fiscal year with a record number of gift and grant commitments on the books, according to Rehm, and is expecting a strong year to come in philanthropic fundraising.

The network offset its 2012 shortfall by cutting discretionary spending on items such as travel and consulting, and by slowing hiring for new and vacant positions. These cuts saved $4 million.

The budget approved by the NPR Board also anticipates expenses of $17.5 million for the network’s Distribution/Interconnection division and revenues of $17.4 million, with an operating deficit of $116,000.

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