Two of iHeartMedia’s stations targeted to Chicago’s African-American community are planning to broadcast from Chicago State University on Friday as Illinois’ funding crisis could shut the school down.
Coming to the South Side campus for a live broadcast are WGCI-FMs Kyle Santillian, Kendra G., and Leon Rogers and WGRB-FM’s Angela Martin and Mark Smith. Both will air their respective morning shows from 6 to 10 a.m. as a one-time only simulcast. Also on hand are Chicago State students who are being impacted by the funding crisis.
Disclaimer: Yours truly attended Chicago State from 1990 to 1996 and obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.
Located in the Roseland neighborhood, Chicago State has been hit hard by the continuing budget impasse in downstate Springfield between House Speaker Michael Madigan and Governor Bruce Rauner, resulting without a state budget since the fiscal year began on July 1, 2015. Since then, state services and programs have been cut, affecting the elderly, disabled, and education programs. Last fall, Rauner bought ad time on local TV stations through a Super PAC to attack Madigan – an unusual (and unsuccessful) move since political advertising typically does not occur in off-election years.
In addition to Chicago State, other state universities such as Governors State (located in southwest suburban University Park) and Eastern Illinois have also felt the pinch. But no school has been affected more than Chicago State, which has accelerated its spring semester in order for students to graduate before the school shuts down indefinitely. Relief to keep the doors open has either been vetoed by Governor Rauner or failed to be overridden by the Democratic majority in the legislature.
The standoff has angered the student body at Chicago State, made up of mostly African-American students, whom otherwise could not afford to attend more expensive universities. But the backlash hasn’t moved neither a seemingly unsympathetic Madigan or Rauner – a complete, total disgrace.
You know we’ve reached the heights of the bizarro world when two radio stations owned by a big media corporation – one who has been the poster child of what’s wrong with radio is doing their job…serving the needs of their community – while politicians in Springfield are flat out refusing to do theirs.
Welcome to politics in 2016.
This story was first reported by Chicagoland Radio & Media.