Dan Skinner, general manager of WBAA, said the station has started a fund drive to help underwrite at least three years of the cost of NPR programming. The programs under consideration are "Morning Edition" and "Weekend Edition."
"The response to our fund drive last fall was so overwhelming, we felt we could attempt to restore a portion of NPR sooner than originally planned," Skinner said. "We want our audience to know that we are listening to them."
WBAA dropped NPR in the fall of 1992 when programming costs escalated, replacing it with Public Radio International.
According to Skinner, the cost for three years of "Morning Edition" and "Weekend Edition" is $180,000. So far, through a combination of on-air, direct mail and corporate fund-raising efforts, $110,000, has been raised. Included in that figure is a portion of the more than $61,000 that was raised in the station's first ever, on-air membership drive last fall.
"We are hopeful that between the spring on-air membership drive in April and other campaign efforts, the additional $70,000 needed can be raised," Skinner said. "We also will be asking our listeners to continue their ongoing support so we can eventually add more NPR programs."
"Morning Edition" and "Weekend Edition" would air on WBAA 920-AM. WBAA-FM 101.3 would carry regular NPR newscasts throughout the day. Skinner says the process to put the news shows on the air will begin as soon as the goal is met.
WBAA-AM, a news and information station, has been broadcasting since 1922 and was the first licensed radio station in the state. WBAA-FM went on the air in 1993 and focuses on fine arts programming.
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