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Storm-Affected Stations Recovering

CPB issues assistance grants to WNYC, WNET

Stations in the areas affected by Hurricane Sandy continue to return to the air on their own frequencies, like WFMU(FM) in Jersey City, N.J.

New York Public Radio WNYC(FM/AM) is another one of those. It had continued operating on its FM frequency once its transmitter site was flooded. Laura Walker, chief executive of New York Public Radio, estimated WNYC’s costs for covering the storm at $300,000 to $500,000, and perhaps $300,000 for repairing its AM transmitter, reported the New York Times.

Some of those costs will be defrayed.

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting okayed assistance grants of $250,000 each to WNET and WNYC to support their efforts to provide listener and viewers in the New York and New Jersey metros with continued news and information about relief and recovery efforts following Hurricane Sandy.

Public radio station WNYC has reporters stationed throughout New York and New Jersey to provide updates on the recovery process and connect listeners to emergency resources. The station has aired all recent press conferences by elected officials and has featured interviews with key officials.

WNYC also created a number of maps that helped online audiences follow the path of the storm and track storm surges and flooding throughout New York and New Jersey. Currently a “transit tracker” is keeping people up to date on the status of mass transportation systems, while a map of the five New York City boroughs is providing a color-coded update on traffic jams, according to CPB.

On television, WNET and WNET-owned NJTV began broadcasting extensive Hurricane Sandy coverage last Sunday and continued throughout the duration of the storm with live updates, programming and press conferences with Governor Christie and other state and local officials. In addition, NJTV provided streaming coverage on their website.

Also, the FCC has issued four more STAs to help radio stations with their restoration efforts and reach out their communities.