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Local organizations react to president's proposed budget cuts

$54 billion increase for defense spending proposed


SAN ANTONIO – KLRN has been a part of San Antonio for more than 50 years, with educational programming and community outreach. If President Donald Trump's proposed budget cuts get approved, KLRN and other local public television and radio stations will suffer.

"If that were to be eliminated, that would mean approximately 12 percent of our budget or almost $1 million," said Arthur Emerson, KLRN president and CEO.

Emerson said that million-dollar loss would greatly affect KLRN's programming.

Texas Public Radio would also take a hit. Joyce Slocum, president and CEO of TPR, said if 7 percent of the system's funding is cut, the result could be a scale-down of employees and purchased programming.

"NPR is going to suffer from this cutback," Emerson said. "Public television across the nation is going to suffer from this cutback. So, yes, we take this very seriously."

The proposed spending cuts would affect 19 agencies, but the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would receive the biggest cuts.

Trump's budget blueprint is far from being approved. The blueprint gives Congress and the public a look at what is important to the administration.

House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday that he welcomes the president's blueprint for next year's budget. Meanwhile, Democrats are criticizing the cuts.

Debbie Racca-Sittre, director of the city's Department of Arts and Culture, sent KSAT this statement:

“Arts and culture are important to our community because they enrich the quality of life for residents and visitors, especially for San Antonio as a city with deep historical and cultural roots. The City of San Antonio stimulates the growth and development of the arts and culture industry in San Antonio through support, guidance and leadership to our local arts partners. The impact from potential loss of funding from the National Endowment for the Arts would vary for each local organization that does receive funding, but for some organizations, the funding is vital to their programming and operation. The City of San Antonio continues its commitment to supporting arts and culture in our community.”

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