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Fayetteville Museum of Art woes continue

Posted January 22, 2009

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— Some city council members say Fayetteville Museum of Art leaders should focus on fixing finances rather than building a new site in downtown Fayetteville.

Plans call for a nine-story museum to be built in Festival Park. The $12.5 million project is under scrutiny after opposition to using the popular park for a new museum site began to grow.

The city council helped form a task force to study the feasibility of the Festival Park location and whether the museum could raise the funds for a new building.

But an audit released earlier this year painted a dour picture of the museum’s finances.

Museum leaders have said the audit dealt mostly with poor bookkeeping and that those problems have since been fixed.

But Councilwoman Val Applewhite says she’s concerned about the museum’s finances, regardless of where they build. “In concept it is a wonderful initiative and would be a great addition to this city,” she writes in an email. “However, the bottom line has to be clear.”

Councilman Ted Mohn agrees. “I don’t see them raising the money anytime soon,” he said. “I think they should regroup before trying to rebuild.”

The task force is supposed to give it’s recommendation to the city council next month.


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