The struggle for WBAI continues and Black Star News has learned that a New York State Supreme Court judge has granted the station a restraining order against Pacifica Foundation, the parent corporate owner, which yesterday took direct control of broadcasts and announced that all the New York staff had been terminated.
Judge Frank P. Nervo granted the restraining order this morning barring Pacifica until an Oct. 18 court date from seizing any property, offices, or equipment of WBAI; terminating employees of WBAI; preventing WBAI from broadcasting its regularly scheduled programming; and interfering in the orderly administration of the business and affairs of WBAI which broadcasts on the 99.5 FM dial.
People familiar with the matter say there will soon be an announcement that the staff that was terminated by Pacifica yesterday has been restored. Pacifica seized control of the station’s Brooklyn studios yesterday morning and replaced regular broadcasting with live feed from its West coast stations.
Pacifica claimed WBAI owed it $4 million in payments that hadn’t been made and that the station hasn’t met payroll, rent, and employee health benefits payments in two months. Some WBAI producers claim Pacifica wants to try and sell the station’s license in the lucrative New York City market. They say Pacifica has not supported a plan to place WBAI on sound financial footing.