Local political leaders vote to keep state museum open

By Gary Scott on November 16, 2015 at 2:03pm

Photo from the State Museum Facebook page.

Governor Rauner’s office is reviewing a bill that would reverse his decision to close the Illinois State Museum and its satellite locations because of the budget crisis.

Those sites have been closed since October 1st on Rauner’s orders, though the savings have been negligible since the employees continued to be paid. The bill to keep the museum sites open passed this week with bipartisan support.

State Representative C.D. Davidsmeyer voted to keep the museum open, and talks about why.

“The cost to continue running the state museum, which is very minimal, as well as our accreditation, which we’re actually on the verge of possibly losing that accreditation, which is a huge benefit to the State of Illinois, and to those museums. It’s actually a pretty rare accreditation, and that’s why I thought it was very important. Once you lose that accreditation, it’s very, very difficult to get that back, and the state museums are very important to tourism in the entire State of Illinois,” Davidsmeyer says.

The bill, Senate Bill 317, passed the House last week 82-32. It passed the Senate in August, with Jacksonville State Senator Sam McCann as one of the sponsors.