Please read & help in any way you can! An amazing California community television station (managed for 21 years by my wonderful Dad, Tom Reeser) is in danger of being cut by the city council—please read more below and at my sister’s blog:
The City of Oceanside proposes to cut KOCT’s funding by $500,000. If this happens, the KOCT that you know today will be gone.
KOCT’s funding represents less than 1 percent of the city’s budget, yet KOCT’s dedicated staff documents almost 100 percent of events and issues that concern our community.
Sixty-five percent of KOCT’s budget is labor-related costs. (And please note that no one at KOCT receives a pension or an IRA). With a staff of only 9 full time and 17 part time employees, KOCT produces more programming for, by and about our community than any commercial broadcaster or government agency does or can do. Because the city has fallen on hard times, KOCT’s twenty-five year legacy may soon come to an end.
KOCT’s funding is not derived from sales or property tax. It comes from the cable company and cable customer. Up to now, these funds have insured that a small portion of the television spectrum is set aside for the public good.
We’re under no illusion that everyone watches KOCT or that our programming is as popular as American Idol but we know for a fact that KOCT is an important information resource utilized by many Oceanside residents and web surfers countywide. Statistically accurate surveys have shown that 75 percent of Oceanside residents watch KOCT. KOCT is available in more than 80 percent of Oceanside homes (55,000) In 2009 over 60 nonprofits and individuals signed up to appear on Oceanside Spectrum to promote, publicize and share their message. KOCT aired 244 public service announcement submitted by residents and nonprofit organizations last year. In 2009, KOCT’s public access services were used by 33 organizations-many to share their church services with the disabled and homebound seniors. KOCT.org averages 6 to 7 thousand hits per month and growing. KOCT’s popularity was determined in surveys and public workshops, enabling the City of Oceanside to negotiate the best television franchise in San Diego County. In times of emergency, KOCT has proven to be a valuable information resource.
Imagine Oceanside without televised programs about our community - no election programs, no stories of the greatest generation, no high school sports games, no 4th of July parade, no music concerts, no television access for the public to promote local events, nothing about our neighbors and neighborhoods - none of the 325 programs KOCT produces each year.
The City Manager presents his plan to balance the budget at a Mayor and Council Workshop on Wednesday, April 28th at 4:00 p.m. in Council Chambers.
If KOCT has been important to you, let your voice be heard. Attend the workshop, call or write your elected officials today.
For more information, please visit KOCT.org.