GPB programming on WRAS 88.5 FM postponed to June 29

Georgia State announced postponement of GPB programming on Album 88 to address concerns of the station’s leadership. The new start date will be June 29 and GPB is still working to finalize production plans, according to the announcement.

Vice President of Student Affairs, Dr. Douglass Covey, met with student leaders from WRAS on Friday morning to deliver the announcement. Alayna Fabricus, current general manager of WRAS, said students were informed about the meeting at 3 p.m. on May 29.

“They’re still looking into [the negotiations that we brought up] but it’s just taking a little bit longer, because there are sill a lot of technical issues… They’re pushing it back so we can find an agreement,” Fabricus said.

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Ana Zimitravich, Jenny Wesvetailova and Josh Martin present at the meeting.  Zimitravich is the outgoing general manager of WRAS, Wesvetailova is the urban music director and Martin is the outgoing program director. Retiring operations manager, Jeff Walker, and SGA Vice President, Osato A. Uzamere, also attended.

Covey said this meeting with WRAS followed one Becker had with representatives of GPB the day before. Administration met to inform GPB of the concerns brought up by WRAS students previously and GPB representatives said they were willing to push back the start-date to address those concerns.

“As it now stands, the agreement will go into effect June, the 29th, but it gives us time to look at how we’ll operationalize some of the student’s concerns,” Covey said.

Covey also said to his understanding, the administration is not planning on renegotiating the terms of the contract.

“We do plan to honor our agreement with Georgia Public Broadcasting…we still hope to benefit from the things we found attractive in the agreement,” he said. “We’re hopeful that with this time, we’ll get to look at some of our options, maybe in the terms of how we work with the students to mitigate some of the things they were concerned about with the original arrangement.”

Previously WRAS members met with President Becker on May 16 to discuss various negotiations for the station. This was in hopes of gaining back some of Album 88’s analog air-time, according to Fabricus.

“We mentioned that we would like, if possible, to have our later drive time back [as well as] our weekend programming…,” she said about the previous meeting.

Fabricus also said she felt somewhat optimistic before, but is now confident the university is trying to work with the station after this latest meeting.

“I think it’s still heading in a good direction for us, and it is good that they are giving us more time… That shows they are actually putting in effort,” she said. “It is true that they are actually working for us and listening to us.”

There are no further plans to reach out to GPB and WRAS management has not been contacted by GPB, according to Fabricus.

1 Comment

  1. Given the Signal’s reporting on emails to and from Dr. Covey discussing details of the GSU-GPB agreement (released as a result of an Open Records Act request), I would be interested in seeing an on the record response from Covey explaining his prior statement to Creative Loafing that he was “uninvolved” in the negotiations.

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