Having already cut $50,000 from this year's operating budget of the Minneapolis Television Network (MTN 16, 17, 75), Mayor Rybak now proposes an additional $100,000 cut from the 2008 budget in order to redirect the funds to a new wireless portals project. The announcement sparked heated discussion recently at a televised hearing held by the MTN Study Commission, which brought Rybak face to face with hosts and crew of Somali programs, Drinking With Ian, and other shows.
"There's a real budget crisis in city hall," says MTN executive director Pam Colby. "But I think we're a vital community resource, and [this cut] would just devastate the organization. We were given no warning that we should prepare for a $100,000 hit."