WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Illinois State Museum

Illinois Senate Passes Plan To Reopen State Museum

May 31, 2016

The Illinois Senate passed legislation Monday that would let the state museum reopen. The measure allows the state to charge an admissions fee for the museum in Springfield and branch sites. The governor closed the museum last fall to save money.

Governor Bruce Rauner issued an amendatory veto Friday on legislation that would reopen the Illinois State Museum- if it gets private funding.

Money is still being raised to help run the Illinois State Museum in Springfield - even though its doors have been closed to the public for three months. A not-for-profit that deals with grants and private donations continues to solicit, sending out pleas for donations in the mail.

A month and a half after the Illinois State Museum shut its doors to visitors, lawmakers Tuesday passed a measure that could lead to its reopening.

The Illinois State Museum and its affiliated sites shut their doors to visitors at the end of September. Advocates have mourned the loss of the Springfield-based museum, which also hosts researchers and preserves millions of artifacts, from mastodon skeletons to Native American relics.

Lisa Ryan

The Illinois State Museum is in danger of losing is accreditation, and Governor Bruce Rauner's administration said there is no way to know whether the museum will ever reopen.

Rich Egger

If you've been meaning to visit the Illinois State Museum in Springfield, the Dickson Mounds Museum in Fulton County, or museum shops in Lockport and Chicago -- you have just one month left to do so.

Lisa Ryan

A panel of lawmakers will weigh in Wednesday on the planned closure of two state facilities.  But the final decision rests with the governor.

artsalliance.org

Ra Joy heads Arts Alliance Illinois, an advocacy group that represents hundreds of cultural groups and artists in the state. He was at the capitol this past week with about 500 hundred other rally-goers, urging Governor Bruce Rauner and lawmakers to keep the Illinois State Museum open.

Rich Egger

Supporters of the Illinois State Museum spent hours Monday fighting for its future. Governor Bruce Rauner has recommended closing the museum and its collections center as well as Dickson Mounds and satellite sites.

Rich Egger

For this week’s program, Rich Egger spoke with Dr Eric Grimm of the Illinois State Museum. They talked after Grimm gave the presentation “The Science of Climate Change” as part of the Second Sunday Science Series at Dickson Mounds Museum.