Public Broadcasters Receive Emergency Boost From CPB Grant


Mississippi Public Broadcasting and Indian River State College Public Media in Fort Pierce, FL, are the inaugural recipients of grants from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to bolster their emergency alert capabilities. These grants, amounting to approximately $386,000, are part of the Next Generation Warning System grant program, financed by FEMA.

FEMA selected CPB in 2022 to manage the NGWS grant initiative, aimed at enhancing the resilience and effectiveness of public alerting systems nationwide. The NGWS grant program is slated to distribute approximately $34 million over a two-year span to stations serving rural, Tribal, and underserved communities. The goal is to both modernize equipment and offer training to improve alerting capabilities.

Mississippi Public Broadcasting, a statewide network operating 8 public radio stations, will utilize up to $221,000 to upgrade its EAS encoders. This will allow the organization to expand the capacity and geographic targeting of its emergency alerts across Mississippi. On the other hand, IRSC Public Media will use its $165,680 grant to install a new HD transmission line and antenna in Okeechobee, FL, for WQCS, WQCP and WQJS.

FEMA has earmarked a total of $96 million for the program, which is open to public television and radio stations looking to enhance their alert and warning systems.

CPB President and CEO Patricia Harrison said, “Public media stations have always played a vital role in emergency alerting in communities across the country. The Next Generation Warning System grant program will enable public media organizations such as Mississippi Public Broadcasting and IRSC Public Media to replace and upgrade their technology and infrastructure that enhances critical alerting and warning capabilities to help protect those communities.”

“FEMA strives to provide trusted timely alerts and warnings to all people affected by threats,” said Antwane Johnson, director of FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. “The Next Generation Warning System grant program enables us to expand and improve this vital infrastructure to better prepare and protect underserved communities.”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here