Friday roundup: Kansas spares pubcasting funding; letter sheds light on dismissal in Ga.

By Current Staff

Rogers

• Public broadcasting appropriations in Kansas are safe for another year. After the state House threatened earlier this week to zero out funding to pubcasters in its annual budget, it compromised with the Senate Thursday on level funding of $600,000, reports AP. The funding bill must next pass the Senate and be signed into law by Rep. Gov. Sam Brownback, who originally supported the $600,000 appropriation.

• Atlanta’s Fox 5 TV station uncovered the dismissal letter sent by Georgia Public Broadcasting to Chip Rogers, the former state senator who until his April 18 dismissal from the network was receiving a controversial $150,000 salary for producing a business program. The letter, dated the day of Rogers’s firing, accused him of violating employment policies on “political activity, outsider or dual employment, time and attendance.” Travel records from Rogers’s second job, the Asian American Hotel Owners Association, showed that the group had sent him out of town 15 times since September 2013 while he remained a full-time GPB employee, Fox 5 reports.

• Vermont Public Radio is urging listeners to weigh in on plans by the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission to approve a 100-watt repeater in that country, which VPR says would block its own coverage of Montreal. The CRTC is considering approving an FM repeater for CJLO-AM, which is licensed to Concordia University, in Canada. VPR said that a repeater operating on 107.9 FM, also the frequency used by VPR, would “interfere with Montreal-area reception of WVPS (107.9 FM Burlington), the only NPR station available in the city.” Because the CRTC is not required to protect VPR’s signal, the pubcaster is asking Canadian listeners to file a complaint before the May 25 deadline.

• The latest feature film to be based on a This American Life segment is Pleased to Meet Me, an independent comedy making the festival rounds and available for digital download on iTunes. The film, starring rockers John Doe and Aimee Mann, follows a pair of musicians who gather a group of strangers to play as a band for one day. It’s inspired by the 2002 TAL segment “Everyone Speaks Elton John,” and NPR and WXPN’s music program World Cafe factor into the plot.

Pleased to Meet Me is the third fictional feature to come from the TAL archives, after the 2006 comedy Unaccompanied Minors and 2012′s Sleepwalk With Me.

Correction: GPB sent a letter to Chip Rogers informing him of his termination, not an email, as an earlier version of this story misreported.
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