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NEWS

Muppets star in Toyota Super Bowl ad campaign

"Lady Gaga & The Muppets' Holiday Spectacular" airs Thanksgiving

Frank Oz, Brian Jay Jones honor Jim Henson on The Today Show October 15

Muppet tech master and puppeteer Franz "Faz" Fazakas dies at 95

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MERCHANDISE

"The Great Muppet Caper" and "Muppet Treasure Island" coming to Blu-ray December 10

"Jim Henson: The Biography" releases on September 24

"The Muppet Movie" anniversary edition arrives on Blu-ray

Video: "The Muppet Movie" coming to Blu-ray in 2013

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House rescinds cut in Public Broadcasting

Sesame Street and other children's programming will continue on local PBS stations

Courtesy of the Associated Press
June 24, 2005

Big Bird and National Public Radio won a reprieve Thursday as the House restored $100 million that had been proposed as a budget cut for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

 

"Do we want to live in a society where pop culture dictates all that is offered on the airwaves?"

- Rep. Nita Lowey, D-N.Y.

 
The 284-140 vote demonstrated the enduring political strength of public broadcasting, whose supporters rallied behind popular programs such as "Sesame Street," "Postcards from Buster" and "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer."

The Public Broadcasting Service undertook a high-profile campaign to rescind the proposed cut. Lawmakers were flooded with letters and phone calls.

The vote came as the House worked on a $142.5 billion spending bill for health, education and labor programs for the budget year beginning Oct. 1.

The Republican-controlled House Appropriations Committee had cut $100 million from $400 million in previously enacted support. The committee also eliminated subsidies for educational programs and technological upgrades.

CPB was set up by Congress in 1967 to shield public broadcasting from political influence. It distributes federal subsidies to PBS, NPR and hundreds of public radio and television stations.

Republicans who favored the cuts said federal subsidies provide only about 15 percent of the public broadcasting budget. "Big Bird and his friends can fly on their own," said Rep. Ernest Istook, R-Okla.

PBS still might end up with less money than in its current budget. The legislation would eliminate a $23 million for the Ready to Learn program, which subsidizes children's educational programming and distributes learning materials.

Public broadcasting advocates say $82 million is set to be cut for satellite upgrades and a program to help public TV stations switch to digital technology.

Opponents of the cut said public broadcasting provides programming not available elsewhere.

"Do we want to live in a society where pop culture dictates all that is offered on the airwaves?" asked Rep. Nita Lowey, D-N.Y.

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   MORE SESAME NEWS

Elmo Muppeteer Kevin Clash resigns from Sesame Street
Kevin Clash takes leave from Sesame Street
Sesame Street to air hurricane special Friday November 9
Sesame Street Old School Volume 3 coming to DVD November 6
Sesame Street Season 43 begins September 24 on PBS
Fan support essential for production to begin on "I Am Big Bird"
"I Am Big Bird" Caroll Spinney documentary in development
"Being Elmo", Kevin Clash documentary coming to DVD April 3

 
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