Tuesday, August 4, 2009

BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE LETTER R, AS IN RECESSION

Posted By on Tue, Aug 4, 2009 at 11:48 AM

Cleveland public broadcaster Ideastream, the downtown entity that runs PBS affiliate WVIZ and NPR station WCPN 90.3, plans to cut 9 people from its staff of 107. The cuts, which represent a 7 percent reduction of total expenses, will be implemented October 1, which marks the start of Ideastream’s fiscal year.

Because the cuts haven’t been made yet, Chief Operating Officer Kit Jensen declined to identify which employees would be affected, but said they’ll come from “all different pieces of the organization.” Many will be in Ideastream’s Educational Services area, a community outreach program that makes presentations at schools.

Once best known as a jazz station, WCPN has already cut most of its nightly, locally produced jazz programming, replacing it with the syndicated Jazz With Bob Parlocha program three days a week. Thursday Monday nights, it runs Joe Mosbrook’s Cleveland Jazz History.

‘We’ve tried to do our best,” says Jensen. “We think every position and every person is important.”

In addition to the layoffs, Ideastream’s top three managers are taking pay reductions. Jensen says community support remains admirably high, and the cuts are the result of shrinking allocations from the state, which has cut funding for the nonprofit company’s educational and media services nearly 60 percent. — D.X. Ferris

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