Becker Won’t Support Loan to KCPW, but Anonymous Lender Steps Forward

(KCPW News) KCPW Public Radio has withdrawn its application for a loan of up to $250,000 from Salt Lake City. The radio station had sought the help as a bridge loan, in order to make a payment towards the purchase of KCPW’s broadcast license that’s due by the end of October. But Mayor Ralph Becker says it’s not appropriate for the city to make the loan.

In a letter sent to city council members and delivered to KCPW, Becker says granting a loan to one non-profit organization without a fund or process for other nonprofits in a similar situation would set a bad fiscal precedent for the city.

KCPW President and CEO Ed Sweeney says to his surprise, an anonymous individual has stepped in to make the loan instead, based upon the city’s rejection.

“They stepped up and said look, I’ll make the loan to KCPW, it’s an anonymous individual at this time, on the same terms or better terms than what the city had to offer. And it was predicated expressly upon the city not being able to do it,” he says.

Members of the Salt Lake City Council had expressed support for making the loan to KCPW, but Sweeney says with Becker clearly indicating his disapproval, he does not want the station to be in the middle of a conflict between the mayor and city council.

  1. Rob V.

    Go Ed!! Best of luck to all staff members and loyal listeners! And thanks to that anonymous lender to help us keep up the hopes!

  2. Jim S.

    As a long-time listener and a contributor to the capital campaign, I’d like to know what the plan is going forward now that an angel has stepped in to rescue the immediate situation. KCPW cannot repay the original loan without receiving a new loan. This simply defers the point in time at which payment must be made. If the radio station cannot generate the funds needed at this time, how will it generate the funds needed going forward? I think KCPW owes it to current listeners and financial supporters to provide a repayment revenue generation plan that addresses debt incurred by the 2008 purchase.

    I truly hope a viable plan either is in place or can be constructed. I value KCPW and have shown that valuing through contributions. I would hate to lose what KCPW offers, but I am concerned that, in simply deferring the due date, the core issue has not been addressed.