By Mary Oishi, Development Director
I really wish I could sit down with you personally to say what I’m about to say, so you could see in my face and hear in my voice the importance of these words.
Last year the budget sent to Congress proposed $0 funding for public broadcasting. But we all applied so much pressure, Congress extended the old budget—at least temporarily.
Then before the year closed, they changed the tax law, making charitable donations irrelevant to all but a handful. For KUNM, losing 13% of our income from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting would be very difficult, but losing 54% from listeners like you would be absolutely devastating.
This is potentially a much greater threat to public broadcasting. We can’t let this tactic work! It is up to us to ensure that real non-commercial journalism (and this community resource) survives.
In a member survey we sent out some years ago, you told us that tax deductibility was low among reasons that you gave to KUNM. It was more about our shared values, that it’s the right thing to do. That’s what gives me great hope. I trust you still feel that way.
Many artists have stepped up this time to encourage you to continue to support KUNM in 2018, no matter what happens in Washington. Chief among them is photographer Jan Bartelstone, who donated his work, gorgeous photographs of New Mexico landscapes. His stunning coffee table book, The Unimaginable Play of Light, valued at $27.50, will be given to 20 people who respond by mail or web prior to our Spring fundraiser. Winners will be drawn on Friday, March 16th at 5 pm.
Other local, national, and international artists consented to using their work for Limited Edition KUNM buttons. They include Japanese jazz artist extraordinaire, Takao Fujioka; local blues musician and collected folk artist, Jeff Sipe of J.D. Sipe Folk Art; Gwen Tray Samuels, Quilt Artist; David Paytiamo, KUNM’s own “Iceman” and Pueblo pottery designer; Marsha Fagerstrom, photographer; Santa Fe artist, Sachiko Umi; KUNM volunteer and folk artist, Tim Oswald; and UNM student artists/designers Keith Johnston and Genevieve Valerio.
One local business also stepped up—again—and donated a Salsa bicycle valued at $3,295 to encourage listeners who have not yet donated to do so this Spring, and existing members to renew or give an extra gift to help us in 2018. We are so grateful to Charlie from Two Wheel Drive in Albuquerque. He has been a consistent supporter over the years.
And to YOU! KUNM is here for you and for the people of New Mexico because of your generosity. I wish that message too, I could deliver in person. Thank you so much!