The University of Missouri-St. Louis gave its student newspaper the equivalent of a fiscal middle finger by reducing their annual funding budget to zero.
That’s not a misprint. They literally told the staff of The Current that they would receive no funding for next year. That means the paper is pretty much certain to close–unless the school reverses the decision, or some kind of money angel lands in the paper’s newsroom and starts tossing out bundles of cash.
The decision was made by the Student Activities Budget Committee, who had already reduced the Current budget by $10,000 for the current year. There have been problems at the paper after some previous editors went over budget, but current editor-in-chief Sharon Pruitt says that they have reduced their debt by more than half. She also claims that the paper is always on time with their payments and other financial obligations.
So far, the Committee has not issued a statement or explained why they decided not to fund the paper beyond the current school year. We assume it has something to do with being raging douchebag. In their defense, that’s not really something that fits into a standard press release. Anyway, we really hope that things get worked out, and that The Current makes it into another year–even if that budget might be the most realistic way to prepare the students for the current state of American journalism.