WASHINGTON—Federal advertising dollars should be earmarked for local media, including broadcasters and newspapers, during the current coronavirus pandemic details a letter signed by 74 U.S. Senators to the Office of Management and Budget Acting Director Russell T. Vought.
NAB and other media organizations, as well as smaller bipartisan groups in the Senate and House, have been calling for similar support to assist local media stations that have lost significant advertising revenue since the outbreak of COVID-19. Local TV stations, and other local media resources, have become the most trusted source of news for communities during this time, according to multiple reports.
With the passage of the CARES Act and other COVID-19-related legislation, the senators believe there is an opportunity to provide federal advertising dollars from different programs and federal agencies to get essential information to American communities.
“We strongly believe that local newspapers and broadcasters play an integral role during the COVID-19 pandemic and making sure that stations are able to continue operating during this time is critical,” the letter reads. “We therefore encourage the Office of Management and Budget to work with federal agencies throughout the government to increase advertising in local newspapers and on broadcast stations in order to help ensure they are able to continue to operate throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Among the senators that signed the letter are Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Mitt Romney (R-Utah). Senate Majority Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) did not sign the letter.
The complete letter is available to read online.
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