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Eye On Boise

Wed., Jan. 27, 2010, 9:42 a.m.

Morrill: Idaho Public Television only medium that serves whole state

Peter Morrill, general manager of Idaho Public Television, begins his budget presentation to lawmakers on Wednesday. IPTV receives only about $1.6 million a year from the state, getting most of its funding from private donations and federal grants, but Gov. Butch Otter is calling for phasing out the state funding entirely over the next four years. (Betsy Russell)
Peter Morrill, general manager of Idaho Public Television, begins his budget presentation to lawmakers on Wednesday. IPTV receives only about $1.6 million a year from the state, getting most of its funding from private donations and federal grants, but Gov. Butch Otter is calling for phasing out the state funding entirely over the next four years. (Betsy Russell)

Peter Morrill, general manager of Idaho Public Television, told legislative budget writers, "There is no statewide newspaper, there is no statewide radio system, there is no statewide commercial television." There is just Idaho Public Television, when it comes to a statewide medium that links the whole state. "We're the only locally owned and operated television network left," he noted. IPTV also is the only provider of statewide emergency alerts. The public TV network is under the magnifying glass this year because Gov. Butch Otter has proposed phasing out all its state funding over the next four years. Most of IPTV's funding already comes from private donors and federal grants, but the state money pays for the network of translators and transmitters that carries the signals throughout the state, including far-flung rural areas.




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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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