STAFF CANDIDATE

I am R. Paul Martin and I’m an Unpaid Staff producer at WBAI. I have been at WBAI for almost 37 years, and I know that the station has strengths and weaknesses. The station is facing new dangers.

I have been a part of the WBAI LSB since 2004. I’ve been the WBAI LSB Treasurer since April 2008. I am Chair of the WBAI local Finance Committee and a member of the National Finance Committee. I used to be a Shop Steward at WBAI.

The Pacifica Mission Statement says that each Pacifica station must be self-sustaining. WBAI has not been self-sustaining for a long time. In early 2005, the layoffs began. Since then Staff cuts have been drastic, and the station still can’t pay all of its bills. The General Manager has proposed a FY19 budget that will result in a six figure deficit, while still pitching at least 150 days. This can’t go on.

In my time as a Shop Steward at WBAI, and especially as the WBAI LSB Treasurer, I have come to understand WBAI’s financial problems. I also know how the other Pacifica stations relate to WBAI, and that is an important thing to be aware of.

WBAI must improve its revenue. Regular training for Staff would probably help with that.

Station Management is a chronic weakness. In 2017, the General Manager squandered $50,000 on a company which was supposed to greatly increase WBAI’s social media presence. It didn’t work. The General Manager admitted that the money had been wasted. The General Manager told the local Finance Committee that early in 2017, the station lost half of the BAI Buddy participants. The LSB needs to ensure that the station has competent Management. Management should also communicate with the Staff better than it has.

WBAI still has a diversity of programing and still has an impact on the world, but it can improve. It must improve in order to survive.
There are some Staff, and some listeners, who have been pushing for a Public Service Operating Agreement (PSOA) with a public access cable TV outfit in Manhattan. They have told Staff that this would be a partnership. In fact a PSOA is not a partnership, it is a take over.

There are four other stations in the Pacifica Foundation, which owns WBAI. Some of them blame all their problems on WBAI. Last year Pacifica had to take out a loan to pay off WBAI’s Empire State Building judgement that will amount to about $4,000,000 when it comes due. Pacifica must start paying off the loan’s interest in September 2019. A WBAI LSB that advocates handing WBAI to a cable company will aid those at other stations who want to sell WBAI because WBAI is not self-sustaining and is a drain on their stations.
I oppose a sale or PSOA of WBAI.

Elect me to the LSB and I will fight to keep WBAI alive.

I write Treasurer’s Reports for the LSB. You can view them here: http://www.glib.com/treasurers_reports.html.

This is not an official Pacifica Foundation website nor an official website of any of the five Pacifica Radio Stations (KPFA Radio, KPFK Radio, KPFT Radio, WBAI Radio, WPFW Radio). Opinions and facts alleged on this site belong to the author(s) of the website only and should NOT be assumed to be true or to reflect the editorial stance or policy of the Pacifica Foundation, or any of the five Pacifica Radio Stations (KPFA Radio, KPFK Radio, KPFT Radio, WBAI Radio, WPFW Radio), or the opinions of its management, Pacifica National Board, station staff or other listener members.

 

 

DISCLAIMER: This is not an official Pacifica Foundation website nor an official website of any of the five Pacifica Radio Stations (KPFA Radio, KPFK Radio, KPFT Radio, WBAI Radio, WPFW Radio). Opinions and facts alleged on this site belong to the author(s) of the website only and should NOT be assumed to be true or to reflect the editorial stance or policy of the Pacifica Foundation, or any of the five Pacifica Radio Stations (KPFA Radio, KPFK Radio, KPFT Radio, WBAI Radio, WPFW Radio), or the opinions of its management, Pacifica National Board, station staff or other listener members.

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