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City will help fund Litchfield museum after all November 26, 2012

Posted by Ron Warnick in Museums.
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Reversing an earlier decision, the City Council of Litchfield, Ill., has agreed to use money from motel taxes for the Litchfield Museum & Route 66 Welcome Center, said the Springfield State Journal-Register.

The newspaper reported:

The council agreed in principle earlier this month to increase the tax from 3 percent to 4 percent beginning in May, with a half percent going to the museum for four years. The city also will contribute $20,000 from its tourism fund to reimburse museum organizers for the purchase of display cases.

City clerk Denise Lueker said the council is scheduled to vote Dec. 4 on an ordinance that would make the changes official.

Exterior construction is done, with only landscaping and interior work left to do. Organizers hope to open the museum to the public by spring. At that time, the museum also will begin a fundraising drive to pay off $250,000 in construction debt.

In October, the council failed to approve $20,000 in motel-tax funds for the building. The motion failed when the council voted 4-4 and the mayor abstained. At least one councilor was concerned that the city would be liable for the museum’s debts if it failed.

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