Friday, March 16, 2012

'W-2' Documents Chartock Chauffeur's WAMC Employment

Document Source: Joshua Cohen
(Click on Image to Enlarge)
The pictured IRS Form 'W-2' is conclusive proof that Joshua Cohen was employed at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Inc. as documented in the article entitled, "Tax Cheat! - How Alan Chartock conspired with WAMC to avoid paying IRS".

Amongst his many tasks at WAMC, Mr. Cohen was assigned the duty of being CEO Alan S. Chartock's personal chauffeur, all at company expense.

Please note that the Employer Identification Number shown for WAMC on Mr. Cohen's W-2 Form -- "No. 22-240059300" -- matches the employer ID number found on WAMC's latest filed IRS Form 990 - 'Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax' , available for viewing on
SEE: WAMC's Fiscal 2010 - IRS Form 990

Also please note, Mr. Cohen's street address at the time in Albany, New York has been blurred by the editor at Mr. Cohen's request.

"It's like income tax evasion. I am scared to death that if I were to do anything wrong, I would be the one guy in a million who got caught, despite the fact that I believe I ought to pay my share of our taxes. We all know that very few tax cheats get caught." --- Alan S. Chartock - Blog, June 20, 2005.

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Sunday, January 30, 2011

WAMC Now Seeking $1 million Every Fund Drive

Local blogger, Dan Valenti, who punches out broadsides almost daily on his Planet Valenti Web site, opened up the other day with this:

“While the Boring Broadsheet (Valenti's pet name for The Berkshire Eagle) was telling you about such vital page 1 news as Alan Chartock’s grimy grab at a million bucks for WAMC in the latest stickup by Northeast Public Radio, The Planet was dishing news and views, news that matters and views that exercise your gray matter.”

What Mr. Valenti calls a 'grimy grab' may in fact be grimier than what at first it appears.
WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Inc.'s board of trustees could save $500,000 annually right now if it just engaged in a little belt-tightening by drastically cutting the top salaries.
Why does WAMC need a $200,000 CEO?
Is there no one around who could (and would) do the same job for, say, $75,000?
One of the main problems with the way WAMC is run is the station’s total lack of fiscal transparency.
If the extra $200,000 per fund drive is so very necessary, why doesn’t WAMC open its books to public inspection to prove it?
Further, WAMC's publicly expressed rationale for the 25% increase is, according to Alan S. Chartock, WAMC's CEO and president, "the expected effort by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives to reduce or eliminate funding for public broadcasting."
Mr. Chartock, as usual, plays fast and loose with the truth.
Fact is, no cut-off has yet occurred.
Further, Barack Obama has not signed-off on any such cut-off, and WAMC is still getting as much from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and from federal and state government grants as before.
It is far more likely that additional revenues raised from now on during WAMC beg-a-thons will be used to give salary increases to a favored few in WAMC's bloated bureaucracy, but primarily to Mr. Chartock.
(One might recall the $52,000 raise — a salary hike of 45% — that WAMC’s ever-compliant board of trustees granted to Mr. Chartock back in Fiscal 2005.)
In addition, the added revenue will likely be used to reinforce WAMC’s present (and substantial) pension obligations (again with Mr. Chartock and a very few others in the organization set to receive the lion's share in retirement).
Anyone wanna make book on whether the WAMC board ups Mr. Chartock’s salary in his final years at the public broadcaster specifically in order to maximize his pension payout?
Where is that money to come from if not from WAMC’s generous (and seemingly gullible) listeners?
Here is just a partial list of WAMC’s bloated bureaucracy:

Abel, Stefanie
Sales, Marketing and PR Coordinator

Ambuhl, Victoria
Marketing Coordinator for National Productions

Aronson, Abbe
Regional Account Executive, Hudson Valley Region

Augar, Shawn
Facilities Engineer

Barnett, Susan
Producer/Host of 51%

Barr, Nick
Bluegrass Music Host

Barrett, Bob
Producer/ Host of The Health Show

Bohen, Michael
Control Room Operator

Boivin, Christine
Sales Support and Special Projects Coordinator

Brady, Nell
Project Manager and Grants Assistant

Bradley, Pat
North Country Bureau Chief

Britton, Katie
News/Program Director

Busby, Glenn
Manager of National Productions/
Producer/Host of The Best of Our Knowledge

Chartock, Alan
President & CEO

Clairmont, Adam
Live Events Engineer

Coakley, Tim
Jazz Music Host

Cooney, Pat
VP of Operations

Deitz, Charles
Berkshire County Bureau Chief

Dewitt, Karen
NYS Capitol Correspondent

Donahue, Joe
Associate News Director/Co-Host of The RoundTable

Elisha, Paul
Host of The Poetry Forum/ Commentator

Federico, Dona
Director of Sales, Marketing & PR,
Managing Director, The Linda

Felano, Steve
Assistant News Director

Fischer, Wanda
Folk Music Host

Fry, Greg
Hudson Valley Bureau Chief

Gilbert, Kristin
Traffic Manager

Glassman, Howard
General Manager, The Linda

Golding, Mary
Regional Account Executive

Graf, Ray
Director of New Media/News Anchor

Guistina, David
Director of Special Projects/News Anchor/
Internship Coordinator

Gross, Hank
Hudson Valley Correspondent

Hopper, David
Control Room Operator

Horn, Katie
Fund Drive Coordinator

Job, Thomas
New Media/Marketing Assistant

Kaplan, Selma
VP for Administration and Development/Director
for The Linda

Laduke, Sarah
Producer, The Roundtable

Lescak, Sharon
Membership Director

Livingston, Kara
Membership Assistant

Lucas, Dave
Capital District Bureau Chief

Lynch, Jessica
Control Room Operator

Malloy, Zachary
Control Room Operator

Martin, Mick
Video Producer

McKenna, Graeme
Associate General Manager, The Linda

Migliorisi, Matthew
Control Room Operator

Morse, John
Regional Account Executive

Norman, Brian
Regional Account Executive

Perry, Stacey
Chief Master Control Operator

Piccolo, Anne
Regional Account Executive,
Saratoga County North Country
Hudson Valley/areas south

Pickus, Ian
Producer/Assistant to the President

Rosen, Leah
Regional Account Executive

Saglimbeni, Debera
Senior National and Regional Account Executive,
Capital District

Sax, Dr. Nina
Co-Host of The Health Show

Schaeffer, Paul
Underwriting Office Manager (Accounts Receivable)

Shaw, Heather
Control Room Operator

Shields, Brian
Senior Correspondent/News Anchor/Midday Magazine

Slavinski, Josie
Senior National and Regional Account Executive,
The Berkshires/Pioneer Valley

Straight, Darryl
Business Manager

Tuthill, Paul
Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief

Wilson, Jennifer
Fund Drive Coordinator

Wise, Marian
Grants Director

Zubroff, Betsy
Regional Account Executive

And this is an incomplete list.

So what happens if (and when) WAMC has all these hardworking souls expecting to get pensions upon retirement, but the station is unable to raise enough funding from the public to keep that pension plan solvent, in addition to paying the station’s actual operating expenses?
This is the problem with these bloated bureaucracies with bloated budgets being financed and subsidized with public monies.
Eventually that money runs out.

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Thursday, January 06, 2011

Alan S. Chartock, 1993 Recipient of the Toastmasters Communication and Leadership Award

Alan S. Chartock, President & CEO,
WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Inc.

Consider hiring Alan Chartock as toastmaster for your next family function.

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Monday, June 14, 2010

Which Guy is Having the Orgasm in this Picture?

Left: U.S. Senator Charles E. "Chuck" Schumer;
Far Left: WAMC CEO Alan S. "Honest Al" Chartock.
Photo credit: WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Inc.

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Monday, July 28, 2008

Alan's Wheels (courtesy WAMC's listeners)

WAMC's CEO, Alan Chartock, drives this late-model SUV, a Subaru Forester - L.L. Bean edition. Note the New York State license plate -- CJC1731 -- registered to WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Inc.. (Click image to enlarge.)

Thanks to an observant Pirate, Alan S. Chartock's WAMC-owned SUV, a late-model Subaru Forester - L.L. Bean edition, was recently spotted parked at the Austerlitz Blueberry Festival where Alan's musical group The Berkshire Ramblers were reported to have made an appearance.

If you see this car around the Berkshires -- or at night parked in The Chartocks' Hollenbeck Avenue driveway in Great Barrington -- please feel free to say hi to the driver (or, if parked, just leave a note on the windshield or on The Chartocks' front door).
Another view of the same Subaru Forester parked in the 'Performers' Parking' area at the Austerlitz Blueberry Festival where Alan Chartock and his musical group, The Berkshire Ramblers, were reported to have played. Note the Subaru dealer's name on the license plate frame,, which is located at 1754 Central Avenue, Albany, just down the street from WAMC Northeast Public Radio's 318 Central Avenue studio. (Click image to enlarge.)

Politely remind 'Herr Doktor' that this vehicle is supposed to be garaged 42 miles away in New York State, where it is registered to WAMC Northeast Public Radio.

Don't forget also to ask the free-loading little ex-professor just who is paying for his ride, and for the $4 per gallon gasoline used to drive it around to blueberry festivals, on personal errands, and for all that other non-WAMC-related monkey business!
See related article:
"Tax Cheat! How Alan Chartock conspired with WAMC to avoid paying IRS"

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Tuesday, April 01, 2008

WAMC to buy 'The Mount' in $8.7 million deal.

NPR affiliate to take over Wharton mortgage debt

Albany, New York -- WAMC Northeast Public Radio announced today it will buy The Mount in an $8.7 million transaction intended to take over the debt of the financially-ailing literary arts institution and keep the famous estate and library collection intact.

The tax-exempt NPR affiliate announced it would be purchasing all debt obligations of Edith Wharton Restoration, Inc. from local banks and individuals currently holding notes on the property, and that the public radio station will be taking possession as soon as the paperwork is signed.

The former Edith Wharton estate, WAMC's latest purchase to be used as the NPR affiliate's Lenox branch office, and as summer residence for its CEO Alan Chartock.-- Credit: Kevin Sprague, Copyright 2006, All Rights Reserved.

WAMC, in a press release, says it intends to refit the estate, change its name to the Alan S. Chartock Museum of Northeast Public Radio Arts, Sciences and First Amendments, in honor of the station's longtime CEO, and set aside the entire third floor wing of Edith Wharton's former dwelling for use by Mr. Chartock as a Lenox branch office and summer residence.

WAMC says the new acquisition, with its manicured lawns and gardens, will offer Mr. Chartock the peace, quiet, open space, and sweeping vistas necessary to enable its CEO, like Edith Wharton before him, to compose the riveting prose and illuminating commentary that readers and listeners have come to expect from the well-known political commentator and former SUNY professor.

WAMC's Chartock said, "The acquisition of Edith Wharton's home along with the estate's extensive acreage and out buildings will be a fitting memorial to public radio and to WAMC's lifelong commitment to promoting liberalism, democratic values, social justice, and a more civil society."

WAMC's long-time CPA, William M. Kahn, managing director with UHY LLP in Albany, gives the deal thumbs up, saying, "Yeah, I guess. Who wants to spend summers on Central Avenue?"

Mr. Chartock also noted, "WAMC is asking listeners to give what they can so this fragile experiment in public radio will never go out and the fire of our commitment so WAMC listeners can hear different points of view will be the candle that lights the voices that will forever hear truth in our hearts and not die and not be afraid to take on the Bushies and their minions the Cheneys and attacking our Constitutional rights, our First Amendment, and the good Lord willing will make WAMC's newest goal a reality."

Mr. Chartock also said that tax-deductible contributions should be made to the 'WAMC Museum Fund' in care of the station.

The Mount's manicured lawns and gardens will offer Mr. Chartock the peace, quiet, open space, and sweeping vistas necessary to enable him to compose prose and commentary.-- Credit: Kevin Sprague, Copyright 2006, All Rights Reserved.

A special four-week, on-air fund drive to raise the $8.7 million is set for the beginning of the summer tourist season and will culminate with 'WAMC Day' at Tanglewood, an all-day affair which will include a gala black-tie, invitation-only dinner followed by a concert in the Koussevitzky Music Shed and fireworks.

Former New York State Democratic Governors Mario M. Cuomo and Eliot Spitzer will make special guest appearances at WAMC Day at Tanglewood.

The concert will feature performances by James Taylor, Pete Seeger, Jay Unger and Molly Mason, with special guest appearances by 'Prairie Home Companion' host Garrison Keillor, and two former New York State Democratic Governors, Mario M. Cuomo and Eliot Spitzer. <<<<<

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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Listener Charges WAMC With Censorship

CEO Chartock's control-style censors progressive viewpoints!
by Gregory G. Lewis, The Newsketeer!

I have noticed WAMC has drifted significantly to "main stream," where station CEO Alan Chartock exerts such a micro-managing control style, that more progressive viewpoints are censored. I have actually seen or heard this done on multiple occasions.

Although listeners commonly think WAMC represents the liberal media, which is true in the broad scheme of things, closer scrutiny of what does not get aired at the local level strongly suggests a lot of otherwise important viewpoints are quashed at the executive level.

Some examples:

  • Dion Robbins-Zust, who had recently lost in his run for Massachusetts State Senate in 2006, was abruptly cut off by The Roundtable hostess Susan Arbetter. Robbins-Zust was trying to make the point that the media was giving selective attention to two other candidates, one of whom (Benjamin Downing) did win. While I have doubts that Robbins-Zust would have won with fairer treatment, the fact is his treatment wasn't fair. Arbetter more eloquently made Robbins-Zust's point when she hung up on him.
  • WAMC recorded an opinion piece I wrote on the recent beef recall. The opinion's angle had to do with humane treatment of animals, rather than the food safety issue to humans. After all, everyone was talking about food safety, but nobody paid much attention to the animals. In my one sentence bio, I referred to myself as "heretic and iconoclast". The opinion strangely never aired. (Read it here: 'Sick food, sick society')
  • In a case involving a teenager who was arrested for selling Marijuana within a so-called school zone, the teen blundered yet again, but was additionally charged with selling the psychedelic mushroom known as Psilocybe, which Chartock rather cavalierly stated as, "even more dangerous." But, his saying it does not make it true. I have heard many equally valid opinions that Psilocybe, and the whole US DEA Scheduling structure should evolve to a more enlightened decriminalization approach, rather than harsh punitive measures for drugs that have never actually been proven dangerous, except by popular media anecdote. Whether Psilocybe is more dangerous than Marijuana, or perhaps neither are dangerous, we won't hear on WAMC, which has given its moral imperative on the subject. Decriminalization not being a popular view, WAMC is de facto being mainstream by not airing it! Not liberal, and hardly objective.
On other occasions, I've known people who sent letters to his weekly show The Media Project. Where such letters might be seen to favor the print media (Times-Union) represented by editor Rex Smith, over the radio media or Chartock's own station (case in point had to do with the subject of blog libel on the Times-Union web site), Chartock will consistently overlook letters critical of his own radio station (or, letters that question whether WAMC is equally liable where call-ins might make slanderous statements).

Of course, listeners would never know this was happening. After all, do you know what letters Chartock is reading, and which he is not reading? I would suggest that WAMC simply post all letters to their own web site, that way we, the public, can draw our own conclusions.

The problem becomes conspicuous once you learn that not all voices and opinions are allowed air time. Not all should, as we know, but certainly Chartock is hiding the most embarrassing to himself.

Chartock maintains his status quo by sticking to safe and popular opinions, while avoiding those views that could be regarded unfavorably by a large number of WAMC's donors. I think he is a cunning fellow who knows how to preach to a target choir.

In conclusion, I think what is lacking is a more democratic content management. Chartock does give one the sense of being the little dictator, at the expense of what a broader base of listeners would like to hear. I don't think this was always true, but sadly, it becomes increasingly apparent.

These are all little things, perhaps, I realize. But they are only a few of lots of little things that are adding up. I like listening to WAMC, but I think it could be more fairly managed.

More and more I find myself tuning the dial to competitor radio station WFCR (Amherst) or WRSI (Northampton) when I've had enough of the whining and ranting. Truthfully, one grows weary of being bombarded with one man's ego. <<<<<

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Chartock Folds! Withdraws Competing FCC Application Against NCPR.

In the end, WAMC's 'Little Big Man' folded like a cheap umbrella on a rainswept Albany street.
No doubt as a result of the storm of negative publicity that swept in from Lake Placid.
That, and the risk of alienating too many prospective listeners (and underwriters) were WAMC to end-up with even a small translator in that part of the Adirondacks.
And after all that tall talk of just a few news cycles ago.
This ought to be a big lesson for all those other locales where WAMC is trying to encroach in a predatory way on established public radio entities.
It pays to fight back.
All this proposed expansion by WAMC into territories already serviced by other public radio entities doesn't come cheap.
The Pirates are thus left wondering just how much all this expansion is costing?
The expense for making a single application to FCC for a full-power FM license involves not only engineering, but also administrative and legal expertise.
For the Lake Placid application, as with each of the other full-power applications, an engineering study was required to create a service contour map outlining primary and secondary signal coverage areas.
At Lake Placid, that study proposed a 6,000 watt transmitter and tower.
Apart from Lake Placid, there are now seven other communities where WAMC is seeking to expand with full-power licenses which, according to a report in Boston Business Journal, include: "..... Brewster; Cooperstown; .... Norwich and Stamford in New York; Vergennes, Vt.; Manchester, Conn., and West Swanzey, N.H.. There are rivals for all but the Stamford and West Swanzey frequencies."
Two of those competing rivals are Vermont Public Radio and St. Lawrence University.
Bottom line: What's the total cost to WAMC's listeners and underwriters for all these proposed expansions, including the aborted Lake Placid application?
Why is it even necessary to expand into communities already serviced by public radio?
One other question: Is the expense of all this proposed expansion the impetus behind raising target goals for WAMC's thrice-annual fund-raisers to $800,000 per week-long beg-a-thon?

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

WAMC, NCPR, Cash Flow, and Power

Call me crazy, but do you really think FCC would grant WAMC's (or Northeast Gospel Broadcasting's) competing full-power application over North Country Public Radio's full-power application?
I doubt it.
Not least because it would cause irreparable harm to the legacy broadcaster -- NCPR -- which already inhabits the frequency (albeit with a translator).
This doesn't mean NCPR won't have to go through all the motions, the paperwork, the presentations, a possible hearing, and of course, a bankroll in legal fees.
It will.
It does mean, though, that when it's all over, all things being equal, NCPR will likely end-up with the full-power license while WAMC and NGB will likely drop their respective applications in exchange for something of equivalent value.
There may even be need to call upon Congressman John McHugh (Republican) to have a long talk with Congressmen Maurice Hinchey and Michael McNulty (both Democrats -- Hinchey is also a WAMC Trustee).
Remember, this is all just business and politics -- the quest for listeners' ears, their wallets, the underwriters that cater to those wallets, and votes.
This has nothing to do with public radio, and everything to do with cash flow and power.

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Sunday, December 16, 2007

Imperialist Radio: A Hostile Takeover of North Country Public Radio by WAMC?

Recommended reading:
Imperialist Radio: A Hostile Takeover of NCPR?
by Adirondack Almanack Editor
WAMC declares war on fellow public radio station.
by Brian, editor
Musings of a (Fairly) Young Contrarian

Blog Editor's Note:
Author Adirondack Almanack Editor in his list of what listeners can do, recommends this:
"Begin advocating for the removal of Alan Chartock as head of WAMC. He's been unaccountable for far too long."
It's good finally to know others are now saying what the WAMC PIRATES have been advocating FOR YEARS!!!

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Use of the term "Tax Cheat"

Alan S. Chartock

Dear Mr. Weaver,
Concerning Mohawk Valley blog which today discusses e-mails between Times-Union columnist Mark McGuire and myself dealing with WAMC, Alan Chartock, and an Income Tax Evasion Scheme.

Please note the oath printed prominently above the signature panel on IRS Form 990 - "Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax". It reads: "Under penalties of perjury, I declare that I have examined this return, including accompanying schedules and statements, and to the best of my knowledge and belief, it is true, correct, and complete."

You state: "I would not go to the extreme that Heller does in calling Alan Chartock a tax cheat. The fact that he signs tax returns doesn‘t mean he reads them. That may not legally excuse him from responsibility for any errors in returns, but it doesn’t necessarily make him a cheat."

Sorry Mr. Weaver, but words mean something, most especially the words in a signed oath to IRS. The fact that Mr. Chartock is chief executive officer of a tax-exempt charity, and signs that charity's annual IRS return means that he better read that return -- every line of it! Otherwise, what is his purpose as the salaried $150K per year CEO of the organization?

Pardon me if I am less than sympathetic concerning any notion that this CEO, at the helm of this multi-million dollar tax-exempt org for more than twenty years (and who is acknowledged by friend and foe alike to be the ultimate micro-manager), would somehow not know the IRS rules governing how executive compensation at tax-exempts is to be accounted for, including how fringe benefits paid to org officials are to be calculated and reported to Uncle Sam.

At minimum, Mr. Chartock has got to suspect that somebody was paying for those new WAMC cars he's been driving these past twenty years, and that somebody was footing the bill for his chauffeur, for his use of furnished intown hideaways, and for his myriad other org perks so delightfully within easy reach these many oh-so-flush years at the helm.

Calling Alan Chartock a "tax cheat" isn't extreme, it is calling a spade, "a spade!"

G. M. Heller, editor
WAMC Northeast PIRATE Network

ALSO SEE: "TAX CHEAT! - How Alan Chartock conspired with WAMC to avoid paying IRS."

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Topic: Reply to Mark McGuire's T-U column re: WAMC, Chartock, Income Tax Evasion Scheme

Reply to Mark McGuire's 12/1/06 T-U column and blog:
"If it's on the Net, it must be true"
Also published as:
"Rumors on blogs are dilemmas in newsrooms"

NOTE: You can read the full thread of Mr. McGuire's Responses and WAMC Pirates' Replies in the Comments Section.

Mr. McGuire,
You wrote:
"There’s an Internet guy out there waging a very public crusade against a local radio host. Internet guy has charged the host with tax impropriety; the host and the station’s accountants deny it, and give clear reasons why the allegations are false.
"There’s been no story on this in the Times Union (and, as you noticed, no names here) — prompting the Internet guy to wail that the paper is hushing up the story.
"If a mere allegation — unsubstantiated even — is causing impact in the public debate, isn’t it a media outlet’s duty to report on its existence?"

Now Mark, maybe I assume too much, but it sounds to me like you are referring to my article published on the WAMC Pirates Web site, the one entitled "Tax Cheat: How Alan Chartock conspired with WAMC to avoid paying IRS."

You state that "the host and the station’s accountants deny it, and give clear reasons why the allegations are false."

Well, that's nice to hear --- finally.

Now, specifically just what were those "clear reasons" given by Mr. Chartock and accountant William Kahn to prove the allegations false? And to whom did they give them, and in what publication were those reasoned explanations written up?

As far as I can tell, neither individual has made any attempt publicly to offer clarity either in a public forum or to me personally as author of the original article. Plus, other than what I reported in the article in an interview Mr. Kahn gave me, neither Chartock nor Kahn has responded to specific questions nor to my requests for what you call "clear" explanations.

Please note that in the article, specific pages from WAMC's IRS Form 990's are excerpted for all to see. Readers can view for themselves the failure of WAMC to accurately account to IRS valuable corporate perquisites and taxable fringe benefits paid to WAMC's CEO.

So far not a single individual from WAMC nor from Kahn's accounting firm (nor anyone else for that matter) has come forward to refute a single one of the specific allegations made in the article.

If Messrs. Chartock or Kahn have given you "clear reasons why the allegations are false", you have an obligation now (since you raise the subject by writing about it in your column) to make that information public for the rest of us. That would be the least the Albany Times-Union could do since the newspaper hasn't bother to investigate this matter on its own.

As it stands now, WAMC's own IRS filings as a 501c3 tax-exempt charity, along with the corroborated testimony of numerous folks affiliated with WAMC concerning those extensive and valuable perqs given the boss, make a far more convincing case beyond reasonable doubt than just your blanket (and vague) assurance that 'clear reasons' have been given that the allegations are somehow false.

For more than two decades Mr. Chartock has received expensive fringe benefits from WAMC that consistently went unreported to IRS apparently in an effort by the public broadcaster to shield its CEO from having to pay income taxes on their value. I await the list of 'clear reasons' that were given to refute this allegation.

Very truly yours,
Glenn M. Heller, editor
WAMC Northeast Pirate Network
Web site:
Snail mail: P.O. Box 100, Monterey, MA 01245
Telephone: 202.973.2141

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Coverage maps: What WAMC doesn't tell its underwriters.

Lower power, weaker signals,
less coverage than you thought!
Why is WAMC's coverage map so misleading?

Claimed vs. Actual
Compare for yourself!
Please post comments and opinions here:

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

TAX CHEAT! How Alan Chartock conspired with WAMC to avoid paying IRS.

The story the Times-Union
WON'T publish!!!
Failure to report CEO's taxable 'perks'
could leave trustees liable.
Listener $$$ lavished on public radio CEO's 'perks':
Cars, Chauffeur, Intown apartments!
Cuomo book cost WAMC!
By G.M. Heller
Washington, D.C.
Originally published: Thursday, May 11, 2006.
For more than two decades, radio station chief executive Alan S. Chartock has been the recipient of expensive fringe benefits provided by his employer, WAMC Northeast Public Radio, benefits that consistently went unreported to IRS apparently in an effort by the public broadcaster to shield its CEO from having to pay income taxes on their value. (continued)

Read : TAX CHEAT! How Alan Chartock conspired with WAMC to avoid paying IRS.
Please post comments and opinions here.

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Friday, March 24, 2006

Topic: So Alan says to his board of trustees, "Pimp my ride!"

And so the board did as it was told -- giving WAMC's CEO-for-life the keys to a brand new 'loaded' 2006 Subaru Forester.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Topic: WAMC-FM's Board of Trustees lacks legitimacy -- Let the members vote.

The ever-fawning press coverage by the Albany and Berkshire press of Alan Chartock and what the radio station boss insists on calling the 'WAMC Northeast Public Radio Network' always manages to avoid dealing with the underlying ethical problem plaguing WAMC-FM: that the paid listener/membership is not given the legal right to meet annually to vote in corporate-style elections for those who would serve on the WAMC board of trustees; for those who would serve as corporate officers; for the amount of salaries to be paid to those corporate officers; and for any other business that fittingly would come before a similar public group at an annual corporate shareholders' meeting.

Until WAMC's listener/members are given this simple yet basic right -- a right that is guaranteed at publicly-owned corporations -- then Mr. Chartock and his hand-picked 'rubber-stamp' board of trustees rightfully deserve whatever bashing and drubbing they get from critics -- and for the simple and obvious reason that Chartock and Company lack legitimacy.

Mr. Chartock rants ad nauseam about the Republicans 'stealing' the White House in 2000 and 2004, yet here is a guy that in 25 years of near-totalitarian control at so-called 'public' broadcaster WAMC has never once had the guts to stand for election before 'his' station's own paid membership. Even if you could ignore the obvious personal hypocrisy of the man, what kind of legitimacy is that? Who annointed this guy king of a public broadcaster?

And please don't counter with the stale (and phony) argument that "listeners already vote with their pledge dollars". That's rubbish. It sidesteps the real issue and is used solely to keep Mr. Chartock and his cronies in control. Just because listeners send in money to support the local NPR station or a particular favored program they want to keep on-the-air does not automatically translate into fealty to the same management team year after year. This is especially so as information surfaces as to just how listener dollars actually get spent, and about questionable (and even illegal) shenanigans that have occurred under the 'leadership' of Mr. Chartock.

If Mr. Chartock and his merry little board are ever to be taken seriously, let them stand annually for election before the paid members as happens at a growing number of other publicly-supported broadcasters. If they are doing a bang-up job then they should have no problem winning fair election, and Mr. Chartock will undoubtedly be voted rich compensation by the folks who actually pay the bills.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Topic: "Chartock defends $48,000 raise" -- Albany Times-Union

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Topic: Alan Chartock and control of WAMC's annual $6 million coffers: When is bilking not bilking?

New York's newspapers have reported extensively on how State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has charged former New York Stock Exchange Chairman Richard Grasso with bilking the not-for-profit NYSE. Understandably, the general public (and numerous editorial pages) have also been outraged that NYSE's Board of Directors could let Grasso get away for years with such patently outrageous compensation from a non-profit.

Other than the size of the actual paycheck, how is Alan Chartock's bilking of not-for-profit WAMC Northeast Public Radio's coffers any different than Mr. Grasso's actions at NYSE? (SEE: Chartock's $52,000 raise!) A crook is still a crook whether he steals $102 million or a mere $52,000. (The fact that Mr. Chartock is on-air/in print daily ranting against politicians -- usually Conservative Republicans -- he thinks are crooked only shows the degree to which Mr. Chartock's hubris has gotten totally out of control.)

Just as culpable in this matter is WAMC's Board of Trustees and its utter failure to act responsibly to keep check on Mr. Chartock and his excesses. Its absolute allegiance to Mr. Chartock can be pinned on the simple fact that for the twenty-five years of its corporate existence, Chartock alone has hand-picked each person who would sit on his governing board (at the same time being on the receiving end of that Board's generous largess).

(And remember, this isn't the first time the ignominious professor has engaged in bilking an inept and compliant bureaucracy. Until his recent early (read forced) retirement from the State University of New York - UAlbany, Mr. Chartock double-dipped for twenty-five years two weekly paychecks -- the first from SUNY, and the other from WAMC -- in direct violation of SUNY's anti-moonlighting, anti-double-dipping policy. SEE: "The Burke Memorandum". Why AG Spitzer isn't now seeking to recover from Mr. Chartock 25-years of ill-gotten SUNY compensation plus the hefty pension that goes with it plus interest makes one wonder whether the Grasso prosecution is just for show.)

At least at NYSE, the dues-paying member firms of the Exchange had the right to vote for the individuals sitting on NYSE's Board, the same board which then allowed Grasso's excesses to occur -- the money to Grasso coming from a portion of those few 'exchange fee' cents added each time a stock sale transacts over the Exchange. Whereas at WAMC, dues-paying listeners, those in the general public who generously fork over cash to support the station's thrice-annual 'begathons', cannot even claim this basic right of control over the radio station's presently non-elected, and inept, corporate board.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Topic: Should WAMC's dues-paying listeners have a say in how much the station pays its CEO Alan Chartock?

Also, do you think Alan Chartock's recent $52,000 (45%) pay hike is reasonable given that WAMC is a public charity supported by listener-members?

Note: Alan's pay from WAMC for the latest fiscal year was $166,101 (in salary plus employee benefit plan contribution) versus last year's $114,444.

Your feedback!

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Topic: Why don't dues-paying listeners have voting privileges to elect WAMC-FM's trustees?

The Pirates think it's because the self-righteous Liberals who run the station don't trust that members will elect the 'right' people to the board. If you can provide a better explanation, we'd like to hear it!
Your Feedback:

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Topic: WAMC-FM's on-air 'Political Commentary'.

Is WAMC-FM's on-air 'political commentary' balanced, or does it carry a bias?
If so, what type of bias, and how much of one?
What changes would you like to see made in order to make the station's on-air 'political commentary' better or more insightful?
Should a publicly-supported, not-for-profit radio station be in the business of offering 'political commentary' in the first place?
Is 'political commentary' the same as editorializing?
Is the totality of WAMC-FM's political commentaries generally balanced between left and right (or whatever political labels one assigns, e.g.: Democrat/Republican; Liberal/Conservative; Blue/Red; etc.)? -- Credit to Brian for raising this question.
Your feedback:

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Topic: WAMC Performing Arts Studio and Linda Norris Auditorium

Your feedback:

Topic: WAMC-FM's Web site.

Your feedback:

Topic: WAMC-FM's salaries.

At not-for-profit radio station WAMC-FM, are executive salaries too high, too low, or about right?
Are staff salaries too high, too low, or about right?
Should executives (or staff) at not-for-profits expect to be paid the same scale as executives (or staff) at for-profit companies?
Your feedback:

Topic: WAMC-FM's On-Air Personalities.

Who should stay, who should go, who should improve, who should be hired (or persuaded) to come on-board?
And please state why?
Your feedback:

Topic: What I'd really like to discuss here.

Your feedback:

Topic: I heard this on WAMC-FM today!!!

Your feedback:

Topic: WAMC-FM's finances.

WAMC-FM's Management regularly says that it has only a month's operating expenses in the bank. Management took in revenues of $5.5 million this past year (Fiscal 2004) . Management also keeps buying more radio stations.
Your feedback:

Topic: What works well at WAMC-FM? What doesn't?

Your feedback:

Topic: Miscellaneous -- Pot Luck!

You name the topic.
Your feedback:

Topic: Is WAMC-FM well managed?

Are not-for-profit WAMC-FM's company assets being managed responsibly and/or wisely?
Have there been instances -- that you are aware of -- of wasteful spending?
Your feedback:

Topic: Programming -- What's good? What's not?

Your feedback:

Topic: On-air fundraisers.

What dollar goal should be set (how much money should be raised) at WAMC-FM's on-air fundraisers.
Should fundraisers be held less - or more - frequently than the present 3x annually?
How much do you think it should take to run a not-for-profit radio station?
Your feedback:

Topic: WAMC-FM's Corporate Governance.

Are WAMC-FM's dues-paying members being taken for granted?
Are dues-paying members entitled to elect the station's board-of-trustees and its corporate officers?
What should be done to change the status-quo?
Your feedback:

Topic: Sexual Harassment at WAMC-FM.

Please attempt to stay within the bounds of good taste in your comments on this topic. The 'Blogger' software does allow The Pirate 'blog' editor to edit out words and phrases, but The Pirates prefer not to have to resort to any form of censorship. Therefore, if it is necessary to indicate names of people who have been subject to harassment, please use either initials only, or astericks (*) in lieu of letters. Thank you for your cooperation.
Your feedback:

Topic: Congressman Charlie!!

The following letter was sent via e-mail to U.S. Congressman Charles Bass (R-NH) following his recent appearance on WAMC-FM's Congressional Corner, a daily segment within The RoundTable program.
Your feedback appreciated.

Subject: Hey Charlie!!!!
Date: Tue, 08 Mar 2005 11:44:51
From: "WAMC Northeast Pirate Network, G. M. Heller, editor"
Organization: WAMC Northeast Pirate Network

Dear Charlie (See how inappropriate it is to be addressing you in this fashion?),
I heard your interview on WAMC-FM with interviewer Alan Chartock.
I just wish Mr. Chartock would refer to you on-air as 'Congressman Bass.'
I never hear Tim Russert, George Stephanopolous, or Bob Schieffer referring to their respective Sunday morning TV guests on-air by first names.
When a Congressman is being interviewed on local radio, I similarly do not think first name familiarity is appropriate.
To me, it not only takes away from the office, but over the long term it is demeaning to the office holder.
Be honest: Would you expect to hear Mr. Chartock go on-air and address Senator Kennedy as Ted or Teddy?
I doubt it.
Thus, if you would not expect to hear Senator Kennedy addressed on-air in that fashion, why is it okay for Charlie to be addressed on-air that way?
Get my drift, Congressman?
Very truly yours,
G. M. Heller, editor
WAMC Northeast Pirate Network
Monterey, MA
Washington, D.C.

Welcome to The Pirates' new blog!

Hi Everybody and Happy Spring (Finally!),

This Blog is set up by The Pirates to provide an open public forum for matters related to radio station WAMC 90.3 FM Northeast Public Radio. WAMC-FM is the NPR affiliate in Albany, New York.

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