America’s longest-running independent, free form community radio station, Jersey City’s WFMU, returned to the airwaves on Monday, a week after Hurricane Sandy knocked out its transmitters. While that’s great news for music lovers in the New York Metro area, the station’s still very much in jeopardy. Via Capital New York:
WFMU took a $250,000 hit as a result of the storm, said Freedman when Capital caught up with him later in the day—no small thing for an independent community radio facility overwhelmingly funded by listener support. It was another reminder that Sandy’s impact will continue to be felt by the region’s cultural institutions long after the last FEMA truck has left.
WFMU, which runs on an annual budget of $1.8 million, lost an estimated $150,000 from the cancellation last weekend of its annual record fair at Chelsea’s Metropolitan Pavilion, said Freedman, who’s been with the station since 1985. It was the first cancellation in the 20-year history of the three-day event, which provides a much-needed cash infusion to help sustain WFMU in the months heading into its annual March fund-raising drive. Beyond that, a brownout that occurred before most of Jersey City lost power altogether last Monday caused significant electrical damage to valuable studio equipment including audio processors, computers and the fire alarm system.
Apparently the station only has $15,000 in the bank after paying its staff. The station has raised about $40,000 since the storm, and is considering a one day record fair in Brooklyn, as well as a special pledge drive to raise money.
To donate to WFMU, the long standing champion of independent music, weird talk and other things that make radio worth listening to, check out their website.
(via daily swarm)